Nigerian Social Establishment Mourns Molade Okoya-Thomas

imageMany Nigerians have expressed grief at the passing of one of Nigeria’s leading entrepreneurs, philanthropists and sports enthusiast, Chief Molade Okoya-Thomas at the age of 79.

Okoya-Thomas was said to have died on Sunday night at the upscale Reddington Hospital in Victoria Island, Lagos.

As news of his death spread, many sympathisers thronged his residence in Victoria Island to condole with his family.

To receive them were the deceased’s children, Tosin Alobo Bakare, Hon. Jumoke Okoya-Thomas, Deji Okoya-Thomas and Yinka Taiwo.

Among the sympathisers were Chief Rasaq Okoya, Senator Remi Tinubu, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila and Chief Florence Ita-Giwa, Prof. John Obafunwa, Mrs. Dorothy Ufot, Mrs. Yewande Onilere and former Lagos Deputy Governor, Kofoworola Akerele-Bucknor.

Opening up on her father’s passing, Jumoke Okoya-Thomas said: “It was not easy for us last night (Sunday) when we rushed him to the Reddington Hospital by 9.15 pm.

“We could not sleep throughout the night and were awake thinking of what he was to us. He was a wonderful father. He would save his last kobo to give those in need.”

Before his death, the deceased was the Chancellor of the Lagos State University and Chairman of CFAO Nigeria Limited.

Born in Lagos on June 8, 1935, to the late Hussam Okoya-Thomas and late Alhaja Suwebat Okoya-Thomas (née Gbajabiamila), the deceased attended Princess School, Lagos for his elementary education.

Okoya-Thomas subsequently proceeded to Baptist Academy for his high school education where he graduated as the best student.
He thereafter studied accountancy at Balham and Tooting College of Commerce and had further training in Accounting at Columbia University, New York, US.

Upon returning to Nigeria, he gained employment as an accountant at CFAO and rose through the ranks to become its chairman.

He was also a recipient of the Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur, the highest national honour given by the French to a foreigner.

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