All You Need to Know About Pa Akintola Williams, Nigeria's First Chartered Accountant

All You Need to Know About Pa Akintola Williams, Nigeria's First Chartered Accountant

  • Akintola Williams received a UAC scholarship to attend the Yaba Higher College before moving to the University of London in 1944
  • He was barely 30 when he became a chartered accountant in England in 1949
  • He was the first president of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN)

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Even after his demise, the name Pa Akintola Williams would continue to be remembered as a legend in Nigerian history.

Williams who died at 104 distinguished himself in many areas. His achievement cuts across education, music and business.

Pa Akintola Williams played a key part in the establishment of the Association of Accountants in Nigeria Photo Credit: The News Nigeria
He Helped Establish Nigerian Stock Exchange: All You Need to Know About Pa Akintola Williams
Source: UGC

Birth, education and earliest achievement

According to TheCable report, Williams was born into the family of Thomas Ekundayo Williams on August 9, 1919.

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He had his early education at Olowogbowo Methodist Primary School in Lagos in the 1930s. Later, he enrolled for his secondary school education at the CMS Grammar School in Lagos state.

He received a UAC scholarship because of his academic prowess to attend the Yaba Higher College where he earned a certificate in business.

In 1944, he gained admission into the University of London to pursue a degree in banking and finance and completed his studies three years later.

This made him the first African to become a chartered accountant in England in 1949. He was barely 30 years old when he achieved the feat.

Williams worked diligently and assiduously as he ascended the success ladder. He returned to Nigeria in 1950 with a wealth of knowledge and an intense enthusiasm.

From there, he worked as an assessment officer for the Inland Revenue until March 1952, when he left to create his own accounting firm, Akintola Williams and co., which later became the first African-owned chartered accounting firm.

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The company flourished and now has affiliates in Ghana, Egypt, and Kenya in addition to branches and partners in other African nations such as Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, and Swaziland.

Akintola Williams & Co. combined with two other accounting companies between April 1999 and May 2004 to form Akintola Williams Deloitte (now known as Deloitte & Touche), the largest professional services company in Nigeria with close to a thousand employees.

He was also inspired the establishment of Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN). Even after he retired, Williams continued to work for humanity.

Because of his reputation as an astute accountant and a committed individual, he has mentored and supported the expansion of other indigenous chartered accountancy firms.

He was the founding president of ICAN

Williams played a key part in the establishment of the Association of Accountants in Nigeria in 1960 with the aim of teaching accountants as the movement to promote indigenous business ownership grew.

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He served as both the association's inaugural president and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria's (ICAN) first president.

In 1960, he helped established the Nigerian Stock Exchange, which he continues to actively participate in as an advisor to the market's operators.

Williams set the standard and established the framework for numerous institutions in Nigeria. He gained popularity as a member and former chairman of the Federal Income Tax Appeal Commissioners (1958–68).

He was a member of the Coker Commission of Inquiry into the Statutory Corporations of the former Western Region of Nigeria (1962),

He was also a member of the Commonwealth Foundation's board of trustees (1966–1975), a former chairman of the Lagos state government's revenue collection pane, the founding chairman of the African Cancer Centre (ACC), and a founding member of the Nigeria Conservation Foundation.

Award and recognition

Williams has garnered different awards and honours within and outside Nigeria as an appreciation for his hardwork and contributions to the economic growth of Nigeria.

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He received the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR) in 1982 and the Commander of the Federal Republic (CFR) in 2001 as awards from the Nigerian government.

Williams and John Kufuor, the former president of Ghana, also bagged honours from the Nigeria-Britain Association on May 8, 2011, for their services to democracy and prosperity.

But that was not all. The deceased received the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire's designation of Commander in April 1997 in recognition of his contributions to the accounting industry and the Musical Society of Nigeria's efforts to promote music, art, and culture.

Efuntiloye Mabel Williams (née Coker), Williams' wife, passed away in 2009 at the age of 88.

Died weeks after Taiwo Akinkunmi

Williams' death comes a few weeks after Pa Michael Taiwo Akinkunmi, the man renowned for designing Nigeria's flag, also passed away.

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Legit had earlier reported the death of David Edebiri, the Esogban of Benin.

The High Chief of Benin Kingdom died after a brief illness at a private hospital in Benin City, The Punch reported.


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