Bola Tinubu Biography, Age, Family, Career, Source of Wealth

By Alabi Saheed Abiodun
14 Min Read
Bola Tinubu Biography, Age, Family, Career, Source of Wealth
APC 2023 presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu

Bola Tinubu Biography

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu or Bola Tinubu is a Muslim and a Nigerian accountant and politician who has been the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) since the party was formed in 2013.

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu previously served as the Senator for the Lagos West constituency in Lagos State, Nigeria during the brief Third Republic in 1993.

He was also elected as the governor of Lagos State (1999 – 2007). He is among Nigeria’s top affluent politicians.

Both the Asiwaju of Lagos and the Jagaban of the Borgu Kingdom in Nigeria’s Niger State are held by him.

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He is currently a National Presidential Candidate for the upcoming Nigerian 2023 presidential election under the flag of APC.

Early Life/Education

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu was born on 29 March 1952 in Lagos State, Nigeria to the illustrious Tinubu Family of Lagos State. He is from Osun State and none is known about his father.

His mother, Abibatu Mogaji, was a trader that was given the title of Ìyál’ọ́jà of Lagos State.

He attended St. John’s Primary School, Aroloya in Lagos, and Children’s Home School in Ibadan, South West of Nigeria.

Tinubu subsequently went to the United States in 1975, where he schooled first at Richard J. Daley College in Chicago, Illinois. During his stay at Richard Daley College, he earned a spot on the honors list.

He later proceeded to Chicago State University, Illinois where he earned several distinctions such as the Outstanding Student’s Award, the Certificate of Merit in Accounting and Finance, the University Scholar Award, and the prestigious Summa cum laude for scoring a 3.54 out of a 4.0 GPA.

He graduated from Chicago State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting in 1979.

Family

Ahmed Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is currently blessed with a wife, Pastor Mrs. Oluremi Tinubu who is the current senator of the Lagos Central senatorial district, and six children, three males, and three females but lost his eldest son OlaJide Tinubu to cardiac arrest on November 1, 2017.

His children are OlaJide Tinubu, Folashade Tinubu-Ojo, Seyi Tinubu, Zainab Abisola Tinubu, Abibat Tinubu, Olayinka Tinubu. His first three children OlaJide Tinubu, Folashade Tinubu-Ojo, Seyi Tinubu were given to him by his past relationships while his latter three children Zainab Abisola Tinubu, Abibat Tinubu, Olayinka Tinubu were given to him by Pastor Mrs Oluremi Tinubu.

Bola Tinubu lost his mother Abibatu Mogaji on 15 June 2013 in her home in Ikeja, Lagos state at the age of 96. She was later put to rest at Ikoyi Vaults and Gardens based in Lagos State.

Accounting Career

Bola Ahmed Tinubu was blessed with numerous job offers from foreign big companies such as Deloitte and Touche Consulting Group, Arthur Andersen, and IBM due to his academic distinctions but decided to come back home to work in 1983 after being trained at Deloitte Haskins and Sells in the auditing and management consultancy services of General Motors, GEC, International Harvester, Procter and Gamble, First National Bank of Chicago, and other Fortune 500 firms.

Due to his rich experience abroad, he was given the role of a Senior Auditor in Mobil Producing Nigeria and he later climbed the ladder to become the company’s Treasurer.

Political Career

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s entrance into politics was during his days as a final year student at Chicago State University, Illinois where he won his first political election and emerged as the Accounting Society of the institution’s President.

This marked his beginning into politics albeit on an academic scale.

In 1992, he joined the Social Democratic Party, which marked the beginning of his political career in Nigeria. In the brief Nigerian Third Republic, he was chosen to represent the Lagos West seat in the Senate.

After the 12 June, 1993 presidential election results were overturned, Tinubu joined the National Democratic Coalition, a group that rallied support for the return of democracy and the declaration of Moshood Abiola as the election’s victor.

Tinubu Exile

General Sani Abacha took over as the military head of state, and after Tinubu fled the nation in 1994, he returned in 1998 following the military dictator’s demise, which marked the beginning of the Fourth Nigerian Republic.

Bola Tinubu was a protégé of Abraham Adesanya and Ayo Adebanjo, the leaders of the Alliance for Democracy (AD) party, in the years leading up to the 1999 elections.

He later prevailed in the Alliance for Democracy (AD) primary for the governor of Lagos State.

He ran for governor of Lagos State as the AD flag bearer in January 1999, and he won. He pledged 10,000 housing units for the needy as Lagos State’s governor, but little of it was delivered.

In the eight years he served in government, he made significant expenditures on the state’s educational system and decreased the number of schools by handing over many of them to owners who had already moved in.

Additionally, he started new road projects that were necessary to accommodate the state’s rapidly expanding population.

Later in April 2003, He was re-elected governor together with a new deputy governor named Femi Pedro. In those elections, the People’s Democratic Party won every other state in the South West.

Tinubu and Olusegun Obasanjo

He opposed the federal government, which was then under the administration of Olusegun Obasanjo, over the issue of whether Lagos State had the right to establish new Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) to accommodate its sizable population.

The federal government confiscated cash intended for the state’s municipal councils as a result of the incident. Femi Pedro, the deputy governor, announced his desire to run for governor, which caused tension between Tinubu and Pedro to worsen.

On the eve of the party nomination, Pedro withdrew his name to run as the Action Congress candidate for governor in the 2007 elections.

He kept his job as deputy governor but switched to the Labour Party.

Tinubu, during the latter half of his tenure in office, participated in ongoing conflicts with PDP leaders like Bode George, the southwest PDP chairman, and Adeseye Ogunlewe, a former senator from Lagos State who had been appointed minister of works.

On May 29, 2007, Tinubu’s term as governor of Lagos State came to an end when Action Congress candidate Babatunde Fashola took over.

Tinubu and Atiku Abubakar

In 2006, Tinubu tried to persuade the former vice president of Nigeria, Atiku Abubakar, to run as the candidate for his party, the Action Congress, on the condition that he, Tinubu, would also serve as Atiku’s running mate. Atiku declined and instead chose Ben Obi from the South East.

After the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) victory in the April 2007 elections, Tinubu was engaged in negotiations in 2009 to unite the dispersed opposition groups into a “mega-party” that could take on the PDP, which was in power at the time.

When the opposition parties in Nigeria merged to form the All Progressives Congress in February 2013, Tinubu was one of the leaders who had a role in the creation of this massive opposition group (APC).

Those parties include the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), a division of the People’s Democratic Party (nPDP), which was in power at the time, and a faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA).

General Muhammadu Buhari, the head of the Congress for Progressive Change wing of the APC and a former military head of state who ran for office in 2003, 2007, and 2011, received Tinubu’s support in 2014.

Tinubu initially desired to run as Buhari’s running mate but ultimately relinquished the nomination to his ally and former justice commissioner Yemi Osibanjo.

Buhari led the APC to victory in 2015, making history and ending the PDP’s sixteen-year hegemony in Nigeria.

Presidential ambition

In place of his long-held reported presidential ambition, Tinubu has since gone on to play a significant role in the Buhari administration, backing government programs and maintaining control of the internal party structure.

He endorsed Buhari’s reelection campaign in 2019, helping him overcome Atiku Abubakar of the PDP. Following a party dispute in 2020 that resulted in the ouster of Tinubu ally and party chairman Adams Oshiomole, it is thought that the action was taken to weaken Tinubu’s chances of winning the presidency in 2023.

Source of wealth

Outside his reign as governor of Lagos State, not much can be traced to the source of wealth of Bola Tinubu. One of the greatest controversies around the Jagaban revolves around the source of his unquantifiable wealth.

However, during an interview with Arise TV on June 15, 2022, Director of Media and Communications, Tinubu Campaign Organisation, Bayo Onanuga, said the 2023 presidential candidate of the APC made his wealth selling rice and chemicals.

Bayo said “As a senator , he had a suite at the Hilton hotel to himself. So, he wasn’t a poor man. I don’t know where people get all these things from.

“He didn’t enter politics as a poor man and he didn’t make his money from politics. He was a rich man before going into politics.

“For those of us who were together in the struggle for June 12, Bola Tinubu put a lot of resources into NADECO.

“He was sponsoring a lot of things they were doing with his resources. He had investments in America in real estate. He had several petrol stations. So, he was making money.

Corruption allegations

Tinubu has been embroiled in a lot of corruption allegations from various quarters, most notably being involved with a drug cartel in the United States. Tinubu is said to have helped the cartel move money while serving as an accountant to Mobil Oil.

Bola Ahmed Tinubu: From Drug Lord To Presidential Candidate

“There’s no record of conviction anywhere. In the US, anybody can have issues with the police and with the authorities, but it has to go to the law court before the accusation can stick on you, ” Onanuga said.

The Tinubu Campaign Organization also argued that corruption allegations leveled against their principal were mere fabrications of the opposition. Bayo argued that Bola Tinubu made enough wealth from genuine businesses.

Tinubu has also been accused of illegal operation of foreign accounts, appropriation of Lagos funds in buying shares in Econet (now AIRTEL), political godfatherism, hooliganism in Lagos state, and use of bullion vans to influence elections in Lagos state.

Despite these controversies, it can be said that he is a very successful man with several distinctions in both his accounting and political field.

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