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The first African to qualify as a chartered accountant

Chief Akintola Williams was the first African to qualify as a chartered accountant. 

He began his education at Olowogbowo Methodist Primary School, Bankole street, Apongbon, Lagos Island, Lagos, in the early 1930s; the same primary school his late junior brother Chief Rotimi Williams attended

His firm founded in 1952, later grew organically and through mergers to become the largest professional services firm in Nigeria by 2004.Williams participated in founding the Nigeria stock exchange and the institute charted accountant of Nigeria. During a long career, he has received many honoursAkintola Williams was born in 1919. His grandfather, Z.A. Williams, was a merchant prince from Abeokuta and his father Thomas Ekundayo Williams was a clerk in the colonial service who set up a legal practice in Lagos after training in London, England. [4] He was the older brother of Frederick Rotimi Williams , who later became a distinguished lawyer, and the late Rev. James Kehinde Williams, a Christian minister. [5Akintola Williams was born in 1919. His grandfather, Z.A. Williams, was a merchant prince from Abeokuta and his father Thomas Ekundayo Williams was a clerk in the colonial service who set up a legal practice in Lagos after training in London, England. [4] He was the older brother of Frederick Rotimi Williams , who later became a distinguished lawyer, and the late Rev. James Kehinde Williams, a Christian minister. For his primary education in the early 1930s, he attended Olowogbowo Methodist Primary School, Lagos. Williams then attended the CMS Grammar School, Lagos .He went on to Yaba Higher College on a UAC scholarship, obtaining a diploma in commerce. In 1944, he travelled to England where he studied at the University of London . Studying Banking and Finance, he graduated in 1946 with a Bachelor of Commerce. He continued his studies and qualified as a chartered accountant in England in 1949. A Yoruba of chiefly background, the Oloye Williams was one of the founders of the Egbe Omo Oduduwa society while in London, with Dr. Oni Akerele as president and Chief Obafemi Awolowo as Secretary.

Accounting career

After returning to Nigeria in 1950, Williams served with the Inland Revenue as an assessment officer until March 1952, when he left the civil service and founded Akintola Williams & Co. in Lagos. The company was the first indigenous chartered accounting firm in Africa. [8] At the time, the accountancy business was dominated by five large foreign firms. Although there were a few small local firms, they were certified rather than chartered accountants. Williams gained business from indigenous companies including Nnamdi Azikiwe 's West African Pilot , K. O. Mbadiwe 's African Insurance Company, Fawehinmi Furniture and Ojukwu Transport. He also provided services to the new state-owned corporations including the Electricity Corporation of Nigeria, the Western Nigeria Development Corporation, the Eastern Nigeria Development Corporation, the Nigerian Railway Corporation and the Nigerian Ports Authority .

The first partner in the firm, Charles S. Sankey, was appointed in 1957, followed by the

Cameroonian Mr. Njoh Litumbe. Litumbe opened branch offices in Port Harcourt and

Enugu , and later spearheaded overseas expansion. In 1964, a branch was opened in the

Cameroons, followed by branches in Côte d'Ivoire and Swaziland , and affiliates in Ghana,

Egypt and Kenya . By March 1992, the company had 19 partners and 535 staff.

Demand grew as a result of the Companies Act of 1968, which required that companies operating in Nigeria formed locally incorporated subsidiaries and published audited annual accounts. The drive in the early 1970s to encourage indigenous ownership of businesses also increased demand. In 1973, AW Consultant Ltd, a management consultancy headed by Chief Arthur Mbanefo, was spun off. The company acquired a computer service company and a secretarial service, and in 1977, the company entered into an agreement with

Touche Ross International based on profit sharing. Williams was also a board member and major shareholder in a number of other companies. He retired in 1983.

Between April 1999 and May 2004, Akintola Williams & Co. merged with two other accounting firms to create Akintola Williams Deloitte (now known as Deloitte & Touche), the largest professional services firm in Nigeria with a staff of over 600

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African Akintola Williams Frederick Rotimi Williams Nigeria Thomas Ekundayo Williams

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