…Africa’s First Female Chartered Accountant
A Chartered Accountant, Industry Captain & Administrator, Chief Mrs. Olutoyin Olusola Olakunri was born on November 4, 1937. She attended primary school in Nigeria, and completed her secondary and tertiary education in the United Kingdom.
In February 1963, Chief Mrs. Olakunri qualified as a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England & Wales; and became a Foundation Member the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria [ICAN] in 1965.
Chief Mrs. Olutoyin Olakunri is the first female Chartered Accountant in Sub-Saharan Africa and the second female President of ICAN. To date, there have been six female heads of ICAN, and quite a number of eligible women in line.
In 1978, Chief Mrs. Olakunri was the Chief Promoter of the Society of Women Accountants in Nigeria [SWAN], which she served as Chairman for over a decade. Among other initiatives, SWAN has supported women to realize their potentials in the fields of accountancy, mathematics and other numeracies. In 1997, in Paris, it launched the World Body for Women Accountants; and has been supporting women of other professions to set up similar organizations at the national, regional and global levels.
Chief Mrs. Olutoyin Olakunri has worked with Casselton Elliot & Co. as a Chartered Accountant and the then Nigerian Industrial Development Bank [NIDB], among others. She subsequently took a courageous leap into entrepreneurship & corporate management — owning and managing industrial outfits and venturing into stock broking.
The first female President of the Institute of Directors [Nigeria], former member of the National Revenue Mobilization Allocation & Fiscal Policy Commission, Vision 20:2020 Committee, & Council of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Chief Mrs. Olakunri was also a nominated member of the Constituent Assembly that generated the 1979 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Similarly, she was on the Finance Committee of Nigeria Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), and for 8 years on the Board of Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited.
Chairman of the then Education Trust Fund [now Tertiary Education Fund] for two terms, she has variously served on the Council of Federal University of Ado-Ekiti, Redeemer University, Bells University of Technology, & Achievers’ University. She is currently Chairman, the Committee of Elders.
Chief Mrs. Olutoyin Olakunri has been recognized locally and internationally for her varied contributions to the professions and societal development.
Among the honours are:
• Officer of the Federal Republic [OFR] of Nigeria.
• The African Leadership Forum Foundation for Distinguished Contribution to Women Empowerment in Nigeria.
• International Women Society for Meritorious Services to the Community.
• ICAN Merit Award for the uplift of the Accountancy Profession.
• University of Lagos Law Society for Contributions to the upliftment of Women in the Nigeria.
• Nigerian Library Association Award for Eminent Services Award.
• Honorary Doctorate Degrees from University of Ado-Ekiti [in Business Administration], Lagos State University [the Sciences], and University of Nigeria, Nsukka
• Chieftaincy Title Awards by communities in Owo, Ijebu-Ode, Abeokuta and Ijero-Ekiti.
Chief (Mrs). Olakunri was the mother of Derin Agbaje, the wife of Segun Agbaje, the Managing Director of Guaranty Trust Bank.
Chief Mrs. Olutoyin Olusola Olakunri who died on June 3rd, 2018 at the age of 80 was happily married to Elder Simeon Olakunri, SAN with children and grandchildren.