The Chief Legal Officer, Oando Plc, Mrs. Ngozi Janice Okonkwo, is dead. She was in her late 40s before she breathed her last after a brief illness.
The death of Oando Plc top executive was confirmed Thursday evening by Mr. Adewale Tinubu, Oando Group Chief Executive, in a tweet.
In a special tribute posted on his Twitter handle @AdewaleTinubu, the oil mogul described the late Ngozi — in her late-40s — as a wonderful soul who was ready for every goal oriented endeavour.
“She was knowledge, efficiency, competence, diligence and true leadership. She was what we all hope for in a team member. She was empathy, loyalty, support and trust.
“She was someone you wanted by your side when winning was the goal. She was focus, audacity, stealth, presence and persistence.
According to Tinubu, for 11 years, Ngozi toiled in ensuring that Oando’s dreams became reality.
“She did so with a full dose of infectious optimism everyday, despite the odds. She was excellence. My prayers remain with her family who lost a wonderful wife, mother, daughter and sister,” Tinubu stated.
A graduate of University of Nigeria, Nsukka and University of London, where she bagged her Bachelor of Laws (LLB Law) and Master of Laws (LLM, International Business Law), the late Ngozi joined Oando PLC in 2009 as the Senior Legal Advisor.
She was appointed the Chief Legal Officer in 2011.
Ever smiling Ngozi managed the General Affairs of the Legal Services unit comprising downstream, finance and upstream and key transactions.
She served as a member of the Group Leadership Council, the Disciplinary Committee, the Related Party Transaction Panel and is leading the women rising initiatives.
Ngozi had a strong experience in Corporate and commercial law, direct and indirect taxation, Private equity, Corporate finance, Corporate Secretarial Services, Compensation restructuring, Share scheme design, Mergers & Acquisitions and Corporate restructuring.
She was the Legal lead for Oando Plc on the acquisition of three ConocoPhillips’ business entities in Nigeria in July 2014 for $1.5 billion as well as:
-the divestment of East Horizon Gas Company Limited for US$250 million (2014).
-the partial divestment of Oando’s downstream division to Helios and Vitol (June 2016), and Oando’s Gas & Power division to Helios (December 2016).
-The divestment of Alausa Power Limited in 2017
Late Ngozi was a member of the Nigerian Bar Association, an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, United Kingdom, an Associate member of the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators and an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation, Nigeria.
She was also a fellow of the Centre for International Legal Studies in Austria.
A co-recipient of the IJ Global Award for ‘African oil and gas deal of the year 2014’ on 19th February 2015, in London and had featured in the ESQ Magazines.
Listed in Top 100 Corporate Counsel by Legal 500 in April 2015 and with her team received three awards for outstanding in-house/oil and gas legal team.
In October 2016, she was included in The Legal 500’s GC Powerlist: Africa Teams and in November 2017, Ngozi was again recognized by Legal 500 and certified as one of the most influential GCs in Africa in the Legal 500 GC Powerlist – Africa 2017.
Late Ngozi’s burial arrangement will be announced later by her family.