It was like a story told off a movie production: a successful business magnate who built his empire from the scratch into a multi-billion naira status. And then one day, everything was taken off him. This is the sad story of one of Nigeria’s earlier successful real estate investors, Chief Olajide Awosedo. In the early hours of Tuesday, June 18, he died from a yet-to-be-disclosed ailment at a hospital in the United Kingdom. Before his death, he had been alleged to be indebted to a consortium of Nigerian banks to the tune of N13 billion. For some years, the Odogbolu, Ogun State-born businessman and politician had been having a running battle with the banks and later Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, AMCON over the recovery of the debts. But Spotlight gathered that bigger trouble ensued for the former governorship candidate of the Labour Party in Ogun State in 2011 and Ogun East senatorial aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party in 2007 after the October 3, 2017 judgement of the Federal High Court, Lagos which ordered the takeover of his entire assets, his companies and that of his children –– Knight Rook Limited and Grant Properties Ltd, Olawunmi Olajide-Awosedo, Abimbola Olajide-Awosedo and Fibigboye Estates Ltd. It was gathered that his prayer for a reprieve at the Court of Appeal also failed as the appellate court awarded a cumulative sum of N12.9 billion in favour of AMCON against Awosedo. This meant loss of everything he has ever worked for: multi-billion naira properties in Lagos, Ogun and the United Kingdom. This comprises 14 hectares of land and buildings at Victory Park Estate, Igbokushu, Lekki; land at River View Estate, Isheri, Ogun State and entire Goshen Beach Estate, Lekki, Lagos, including his magnificent mansion inside the estate described as the most beautiful estate on the Lekki-Epe Expressway corridor. A reliable source disclosed that the luxury estates were used as collateral by the late property merchant years ago. He also lost cars, generating plants and other valuable assets to the loans recovery agency. Definitely, this must have been too much for the businessman to take in as he died few days after the Appeal court’s decision.
As a successful businessman, 68-year-old Awosedo lived life to the hilt. He was loved by many just as he was envied by many for his achievements. As a businessman, he tried to expand his business empire beyond the shores of the country, to the admiration of his far-flung fans. But like the general saying goes, he who goes a-borrowing, goes a-sorrowing as he obviously bit off more than he could chew.