Billionaire Nigerian business man, Aliko Dangote was on Thursday named as the Forbes Africa Person of the Year 2014.
Dangote was feted at the unveiling ceremony held in Kenya’s capital city Nairobi. He bet a strong list of finalists to emerge tops for the coveted award. With businesses spanning across the continent Dangote was said to have made an impact not only in the industries he invests in but also to the lives of people.
During the ceremony ABN’s founder and vice chair Rakesh Wahi noted that the event is all about honouring exceptional leaders.
“This is our fourth Person of the Year Event. The mission of this event is to honour one exceptional leader from the African continent, who has made an impact not only on the industry he or she serves, but who also has touched the lives of people, and in doing so is a role model for future generations of business leaders,” said Wahi.
Among the finalists were Thuli Madonsela, South Africa’s Public Protector, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Nigerian author, Arunma Oteh, Director-General of the Securities & Exchange Commission Nigeria and Donald Kaberuka, President of the African Development Bank.
“Aliko Dangote is a lion of Africa in terms of business. He is second to none when it comes to investing in Africa, not just Nigeria. He is also a capitalist with a big heart. He puts his money where his mouth is and his foundation is a step forward for a man who wants to make a difference on the continent,” noted the panel of judges in selecting Dangote.
Speaking at the same event, Chris Bishop managing editor at Forbes Africa said, “For the fourth time I am honoured to celebrate the Forbes Africa Person of the Year. Every year we see tough competition and great debate in choosing winners of great import.”
This was Dangote’s fourth nomination for the prestigious awards. Other past finalists include his Highness Dr. Sanusi Lamido Sanusi (2011), James Mwangi (2012) and Akinwumi Adesina (2013).
Also feted during the event was Donald Kaberuka, president of the African Development Bank. Kaberuka received the lifetime achievement award.