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Helicopter Crash: Ohanaeze Mourns Wigwe, Urges Fubara To Immortalize Him



The apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has urged Governor Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers State, to immortalize late Nigerian bank chief, Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe, who died in a helicopter crash on Friday, in the United States of America.

The group said it received his death with deep distress.

It described the late Nigerian Bank Chief as “one of their most brilliant creative thinkers, an audacious achiever, trail blazer, innovative edifice, charismatic visionary and top banker.


Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe, co-founder of Access Bank, met his untimely death in a helicopter crash on Friday, February 9, 2024 on his way to Las Vegas, USA.

Ohanaeze in a statement issued on Monday in Enugu by its National publicity Secretary, Dr. Chiedozie Alex. Ogbonnia, called on the Governor to immortalize the memories of the late Herbert Wigwe.

“it will serve as a very source of inspiration to the present day Youths, noting that at the young age of 32, Herbert was already at the top echelon in the financial sector and at 36, had navigated the ownership of a bank; and incredibly transformed a fledgling bank into one of the top banking institutions in Nigeria with global networks.

According to the statement, “the enviable life trajectory of Herbert underscores the widely acknowledged Igbo ingenuity, hard work, integrity, prudence and the capacity to turn adversity into a pool of opportunities.

The statement said, Herbert proved to the entire world that the audacity of intellectual prowess, social skill, humility and honesty is far more impactful than the audacity of aristocracy.

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“The President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo  Worldwide, Chief  Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, is in a deep sorrow over the death of Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe.”

“The Igbo Leader described the death of Herbert as one death too many. He stated that Herbert was exemplary in diverse ways, a motivator, a beacon of hope and a change agent with a robust vision.

The group lamented that Nigeria has lost a rare gem; an ebullient young man with an incredible zest for excellence, infectious enthusiasm, irresistible warmth, character comeliness, benevolent spirit and public wizardry.

The statement noted that Herbert is one man who has changed the obscure narrative of Isiokpo with a network of asphalt roads, pipe borne water, solar lights and above all a university.

“His compassionate dispositions found expressions in the HOW Foundation, a non-profit organization which takes care of the widows, the vulnerable and scholarship schemes to indigent university students both in his Isiokpo community and beyond.

Born in Ibadan on August 15, 1966, Wigwe attended the prestigious University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) and passed out in 1987 with a second-class upper degree in Accounting; Chartered accountant in 1989; MBA, North Wales University, UK, 1991; MSc, Fin.  Economics, University of London; and the Harvard. His work experience took him through the Coopers and Lybrand Associates Limited; Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB), where he became an Executive Director; Deputy Managing Director and later the Group Managing Director and CEO of Access Bank Plc; Chairman of Access Bank Ghana Limited; Chairman, Access Investment & Securities Limited; Chairman, Central Securities and Clearing System (CSCS); and the Chairman of Access Bank (UK) Limited, etc.

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The group condoles with Wigwe’s family, the Abimbola Ogunbanjo family, the Access Bank Plc, the good people of Omueke village, Isiokpo, community, the entire Ikwerre and the good people of Rivers State.

It prays that the Almighty will grant the souls of Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe; the wife, Barr. Mrs Chizoba Nwigwe and the son, Chizi Wigwe an eternal rest in his bosom.

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