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Successful Women Who Play Big in Nigeria’s Real Estate Sector

Hajia Bola Shagaya is the 10th wealthiest woman in Africa according to Forbes.
As a businesswoman, she is most notable for her interest in real estate.
She is the founder of Bolmus Group international – a diversified Nigerian conglomerate with interests in oil, real estate, banking, communications, and photography.
The real estate development arm of the group builds and owns dozens of luxurious residential properties in some of the nation’s highbrow areas.
In recognition of her leadership qualities and immense contribution to economic growth, she was twice awarded the National Productivity Order of Merit award and Member of the Order of the Niger (MON) by the president of the federal republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.

Folorunso Alakija is a Nigerian businesswoman, one of the richest African women, and one of the richest black women in the world. In 2014, she temporarily unseated Oprah Winfrey as the richest woman of African descent in the world. She is a business tycoon involved in the fashion,oil and printing industries.
She is the group managing director of The Rose of Sharon Group which consists of The Rose of Sharon Prints & Promotions Limited and Digital Reality Prints Limited and the executive vice-chairman of Famfa Oil Limited.
Alakija is ranked by Forbes as the richest woman in Nigeria with an estimated net worth of $2.1 billion As of 2015, she is listed as the second most powerful woman in Africa after NgoziOkonjo-Iweala and the 87th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes.


Dr. Hannatu Fika is the Executive Secretary of Federal Government Staff Housing Loans Board (FGSHLB) and a winner of life time achievement award at the 2017 National Housing Awards (NHA) for her participation in the development of housing in Nigeria.
The issue of affordable housing has been at the bottom of her heart for years especially provision of houses for Federal Public Servants and this passion has continued to drive her at the Staff Housing Loans Board.

Click here to watch weekly episodes of Housing Development Programme on AIT

Agnes Olatokunbo Martins [CISA, CISM, CRISC, FCA, FCCA] graduated with a Bachelors degree in Economics (First Class Honours) from the University of Lagos in 1983, she joined the Central Bank of Nigeria in 1990. She holds a Masters degree in Business Administration also from the University of Lagos. In 2001, Mrs Martins proceeded to London South Bank University, United Kingdom to study Advanced Information Technology specialising in Object Oriented Analysis and Design and graduating with a Distinction.
She obtained a second Bachelors degree in Applied Accounting with First Class Honours from the Oxford Brookes University, also in the United Kingdom. She is the first female president of Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) Lagos Chapter.
She is currently the Director Banking Supervision, Central Bank of Nigeria. She represents the Central Bank of Nigeria on the of the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC)

Sa’adiya Aliyu has had a varied career in a number of roles, bringing her charasteric drive and inter-personal skills to every position she has occupied. Prior to starting work, she received a Bsc in Economics from Brunei University, following that up with an Msc in Finance and development from the School of African Studies (SOAS) in London.
In 2009, Sa’adiya joined Urban Shelter Limited as a senior Manager to the Chairman Office. In a role requiring a deft hand and a steady touch, she streamlined the operations of the Chairman’s office, increasing efficiency and productivity.
Her ambition for Urban Shelter includes affordable housing- for which she has a particular passion- and she seeks to provide innovative means for the delivery and payment of these structures.

Udo Maryanne Okonjo has a keen interest in Inspired Leadership, Business growth and Real Estate as a tool for growing Gross National Wealth. Her background includes a solid track record in Corporate & Commercial Law at Masters Level and Partnership at leading law firms, along with Business and Brand Development, Strategic Marketing, Complex Stakeholder Negotiations, Ethics and Governance.
A trusted real estate advisor, and wealth strategist to the top 1% of Nigerian Executive and Corporate Investors, she is popularly referred to as an Igniter, Mentor and Influencer among emerging entrepreneurs and professionals.
She regularly key notes on real estate trends, creating wealth through real estate and entrepreneurship, bridging the investment gap for women and millennials amongst other topics. Her strongest passion is raising Purpose driven, Prominent and Profitable leaders through transformational personal and professional development. She is the founder of Inspired Women of Worth, and Curator/Facilitator of the Go Mega Business Growth Series, Trailblazer Mastermind for SMEs along with the Ignite the Champion Within (an Inspiration, High Performance, Leadership and Entrepreneurship Series).



Isoken Omo is the current Executive Chairman of the Edo Development and Property Authority (EDPA). Isoken also has experience as the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of ACCOUTRE Investment and Development Company Ltd. An MBA holder from the University of Hull, United Kingdom. Isoken possesses a highly relevant, award-winning career spanning over 20 years in Finance and Investment Advisory and Real Estate, covering various sectors and global regions. She brings a deep knowledge in creating Real Estate program solutions to broaden AIDC’s offering.

Prior to becoming CEO of AIDC, Isoken served as Head, Real Estate, Construction & Cement Sectors, Mainstreet Bank, Regional Head – Corporate Banking (North Central Region), Afribank Nigeria Plc where she won the best Region for Good Business Initiative Deal. She also headed the Infrastructure/Construction arm of Afribank Nigeria Plc.

At London Borough of Hillingdon, Civic Centre, Uxbridge, Middlesex, UK she worked as a Housing Advisor for 1 year after which she moved on to work as a Housing Tenancy Relations Co-ordinator/ Project Co-ordinator, Strategy and Policy for 6 years with London Borough of Southwark, UK. She also worked at Bamet Consult in Beckton London, as a Property Portfolio Consultancy/Mortgage Adviser. She is a member of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers

Olajumoke Adenowo, founder of AD Consulting, is a Nigerian Architect, Speaker, Radio Host, Philantropist and Author. CNN has described her as “Africa’s Starchitect”. She has been featured in the World’s foremost Architectural Journal; Architectural Record and has spoken on several platforms including the Global Women’s Forum and Harvard Business School (African Business Club). Olajumoke also hosts a Syndicated Radio show on Leadership called “Voice of Change”.

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She is the Nigerian Vice Chairman/CEO, MGSL, Nigeria. Dr Mrs Virgy Anohu is Nigeria’s leading Mortgage Banker and a very senior veteran pan-African Banker with top strategic management experiences from Diamond Bank, United Bank for Africa, First City Monument Bank, Guardian Express Bank and now Vice Chairman/ Chief Executive Officer of Mortgage Guaranty Savings and Loans Limited.
Dr. Anohu is on the board of Premium Pension Limited, a pension fund Administrator licensed under the Pension Reform Act 2004.
Dr. Mrs Anohu, an Aluminus of the Prestigious Harvard Business School Boston is a prolific writer, and has authored many works.


Arc. Eucharia Alozie is the Head, Public Private Partnership (PPP) at the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing. She is an Architect and a Town Planner at the Ministry.
She has a Master Degree in Architecture and Urban& Regional Planning at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.


Rear Admiral Itunu Hotonu, is a trained architect and expert in naval logistics before becoming the first woman to attain the rank of a Rear Admiral in the history of the Nigerian Navy.
Prior to joining the Navy, Itunu’s dream was to join the Nigerian Army, however, when she applied, she was told there was no place for women in its engineering corps.
Sad at the turn of events, Itunu applied to join the Nigerian Navy when she was told that she would be accepted irrespective of her gender. Before she joined the navy, she worked in an architect office for two years after she graduated from the university before she took her professional exams.
She was among the first set of architects to be enlisted into the Nigerian Navy and it is on record that Hotonu was the first female military officer to serve as a Directing Staff(that is an instructor) at the famous Armed Forces Command and Staff College (AFCSC), Jaji and also the first female military officer to attend the then National War College, now National Defence College, where she won the Commander-in-chief’s prize as well as the Commandant’s prize for the best research.

In the quantity surveying profession, Mrs. Mercy Torkwase Iyortyer is a woman of many firsts. She was the first female Quantity Surveyor in the Northern Region of Nigeria, the first female chairperson of a chapter in NIQS (FCT Chapter), the Pioneer and Founding Chairperson of the Women Association of Quantity Surveyors (WAQSN), the first woman to represent the institute on the Council of the African Association of Quantity Surveyors, and first woman to be elected into the position of the Deputy President of the NIQS unopposed. Recently, she capped it all as the first female President after 46 years of the Institute’s existence.
Mrs. Mercy Torkwase Iyortyer was born into the renowned family of Mr. Timothy Yuwa (MON) from Benue State, Nigeria. She demonstrated hard work, intelligence and commitment from her early years in life starting from primary school; when she was chosen to tutor lower classes even as a student herself.
Her outstanding performance in Girls’ High School, Gindiri, Plateau State resulted in her coming out with a Division 1 and many other academic awards. Her leadership skills were harnessed as she was selected Class Captain, House Prefect, and President of Fellowship of Christian Students and eventually became the Head Girl of the school.
She also actively participated in various extracurricular activities such as hockey, volley Ball, netball, track and field events and drama in her secondary school days.
Mrs. Iyortyer moved onto the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, and graduated in 1979 with a B.Sc in Quantity Surveying (Second Class Upper Division) despite the fact she gave birth to her first child during her final examination period.
Iyortyer then proceeded to University College London (UCL), UK in 1983 where she obtained an M.Sc in Architecture (Building Economics and Management). She continually strived for self-development and obtained a Certificate in International Project Management (IPMA) in 2005 and a Certificate in Entrepreneurial Management from Pan Africa University, Lagos Business School in 2010.

Chinwe is based in Lagos, Nigeria and is responsible for the delivery of a full spectrum of real estate services across West Africa. She has over 14 years experience and was previously head of the JLL French International Desk. she holds a Masters in Business Administration from Harvard Business School.

Ifeoma is a professional with over 20 years experience in start up operations across human capital management, business development, business strategy, turnaround plans, process mapping and business re-engineering.
She holds a Master of Arts degree in Human Resources Management from Middlesex University Business School (UK).
She is a Chartered member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development(M.C.I.P.D) and a member of the Chartered Institute of Managers.
Ifeoma has a sound knowledge of real estate investment strategies and fund generation, with experience spanning developing sales, marketing communications and budget plans to implementing sound corporate governance structure for large corporates, SMEs in Nigeria and the UK. She is the Executive Director, Business Development at Brains and Hammers Limited.


LADY MARIA-GORETTI OMEGO A seasoned banker with over twenty years experience. She holds a First Degree in Accounting from Loyola University, Chicago, United States of America and a Masters Degree in Management from the Imo State University Owerri, she is equally a Doctorate Degree candidate of the prestigious Madonna University Nigeria. She has since the formation of Mayfresh been its Managing Director and Chief Executive. She is a Member of the Nigeria Institute of Management.


Olusola David-Borha, also known as Sola, B.Sc (Econs), MBA has been the Chief Executive of Africa Regions at The Standard Bank of South Africa Limited since January 1, 2017. Mrs. David-Borha served as the Chief Executive Officer of Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC until January 19, 2017 and also served as its Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director of Corporate & Investment Banking.

She served as the Chief Executive Officer and Acting Managing Director at IBTC Chartered Bank plc and Executive Director of Corporate and Investment Banking (excluding South Africa). She was responsible for overseeing the Corporate Finance and Corporate Banking Departments, Project and Structure Finance Departments, Asset Management and Private Banking. She also supervises Treasury and Financial Services and is also responsible for the Bank’s correspondent banking relationships.

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Rose Ada Okwechime has been the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Abbey Building Society PLC since 1992. Mrs. Okwechime served in the Banking industry for over 24 years including time at the Bank of England. She serves as a Director of Abbey Building Society PLC. She served as Vice Chairperson of United Bank for Africa Plc since 2013. She has been a Non-Executive Director of United Bank for Africa Plc since July 2012. She served as a Director of United Bank for Africa Plc from August 1, 2005 to May 2010. She served as a Non-Executive Director of Standard Trust Bank Plc. She has at least 8 notable awards to her credit in recognition of her achievements and contributions to womanhood. Mrs. Okwechime holds a Masters degree in Banking and Finance.


Ruby Okoro has a BSc (Hons) in International Relations with a Second Class (Upper), a Masters Degree (MSc) in Public Administration as well as International Certification in Credit, Risk Management, Investment and Mortgage Banking.  She has a wealth of financial experience and expertise in Retail, Commercial, Investment and Mortgage Banking with over 25 years of local and International experience with notable Banks and Other Financial Institutions such as Citibank (Nigeria), FCMB (Nigeria) Bank of Montreal (Canada) as well as Mortgage Alliance Company also in Canada. She is a Licensed Mortgage and Investment Specialist in Canada and a registered member of several professional bodies such as the Real Estate Council of Alberta (RECA) Canada, Alberta Mortgage Brokers Association (AMBA) Canada, Investment Specialist (ISC) Canada and Nigerian Institute of Corporate Administration.

She is currently the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Delta Trust Mortgage Bank Ltd as well as the current Deputy- President South-East of the Mortgage Banking Association of Nigeria (MBAN).


Jumoke Akinwunmi is a Co-Founder, Managing Director, and Director of Alitheia Capital. She was previously the Principal at the firm. Ms. Akinwunmi served as Managing Director at Avante Property Asset Management Services. Ms. Akinwunmi led the development/promotion of Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) on the NSE.
She also established a Research and Analysis Unit focused on the Nigeria real estate sector, providing real estate business information services for private, professionals and institutional investors while providing business development and incubation services for professionals and investors.
She was instrumental in establishing the first facilities management company with a specialization in retail space management. Prior to Avante, Ms. Akinwunmi spent eight years at Shell Trustees Nigeria Ltd., where she was responsible for managing the real estate development projects, a portfolio of residential assets in Lagos, Port Harcourt and Abuja.
Her understanding of the real estate sector and her excellent project management skills contributed to the growth of the portfolio. In addition, she advised on the incubation of Provast Limited. She worked as architect and project manager on several developments at James Cubitt Architects and Adeniyi Coker Architects.
She is an architect and real estate professional. She is an alumnus of the University of Lagos, Nigeria and the University of Dundee, Scotland.


Tosin is a Solicitor with a great commercial mind, excellent analytical skills and vast transactional experience that spans across construction, real estate, finance, capital markets and corporate commercial.
She is a key member of DETAIL’s real estate and construction practice and actively engaged in recent regulatory efforts at financing real estate projects via the capital market. She has recently advised on UPDC’s 30B REIT transaction, the setting up of a <1.3B Private Real Estate Co-ownership scheme, the recapitalization of Intercontinental Homes PLC and the setting up of the Nigerian Mortgage Refinance Company.
She is a member of the Real Estate Lawyers Association of Nigeria.


Chii Akporji is the Executive Director, Corporate Strategy & Planning, Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC)
She Coordinated the set up and operationalization of the NMRC, a mortgage refinance set up under a PPP framework to address the key constraint of access to long term finance in the primary and secondary mortgage markets in Nigeria to the growth of home ownership in Nigeria.
Prior to her current position at the NMRC, Dr. Akporji had served as Senior Advisor/Chief of Staff to the former Nigerian Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy. Before her return to Nigeria, she had a successful 13 year career at the World Bank Group headquarters in Washington DC, where she worked on City Development Strategies (CDS) and Slum Upgrading (SU) programmes of several cities and municipal governments like Lagos, Rio de Janeiro, Manilla, Durban and Cairo.

She has been actively involved in the design, development and implementation of development communications, advocacy and knowledge management programs in support of a number of Bank operations in education, health, trust fund partnerships and urban and regional development programmes.


Adenike Fasanya-Osilaja is a Chicago, Illinois based Mortgage Professional, Industry Trainer, Consultant, and Public Speaker.
She has owned and operated Marvel Ventures Mortgage, Inc.(www.marvelmortgage.com), since 2000, and my MV Professional Solutions Inc. (www.mvpsolutionsinc.com) since 2009. With a background in Law, Banking and Finance, she holds licenses and certifications in Islamic Finance, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, FHA/HUD,and is a National Association of Mortgage Professionals Certified Mortgage Consultant (CMC), the top certification in her industry. Adenike is a real estate finance columnist with the National Mirror Nigeria Newspaper, who hosted her own radio show for several years, and is an expert contributor on several U.S radio shows.
Adenike is most passionate about training on Affordable housing, Mortgage Education, Standardization, Compliance and Quality Control. She consults on Real Estate/Mortgage Finance Company Set-Up, Product Development, Underwriting, Processes and Procedures, Competence, Compliance and Quality Control. She has presented and facilitated for the NMRC/CBN, REUnite 2015, The ETAC Chicago Community Program, CBN Financial, and at multiple other real estate finance events.



Medinah Olufolake Huthman holds a BSc. (Economics) majoring in
Accounting & Financial Management from the University of Buckingham, England.
She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria.

Her working career started at Eko Hotels Ltd. Having completed her youth service year she was employed and held various management posts culminating as the Financial Controller.She left that establishment to set up two startup companies. She is the Managing Director of Hexcel Ventures Ltd, a procurement and logistics company. She is also the Executive Director, Operations of Hydraform Engineering Nigeria Ltd.

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In the 20 years, Medinah has worked in the procurement and built industry. She has over seen the following :
Provide Hydraform machines and accessories to several States to help them achieve their mass housing objectives. Such States include Ogun, Yobe, Rivers, Anambra,Kebbi,Borno, Ekiti, Kwara, Ondo, Delta, Enugu, Jigawa, Ebonyi, FCT etc
Provide same services to private estate developers throughout the Federation
Provide consultancy and supervisory services to State Governments and private individuals to develop some 1,500 houses in various estates throughout the Federation Develop a 144 3 bedroom housing estate in Kuje under PPP Scheme of Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing
Develop an estate of 200 houses with a private developer
Acts as technical partners in projects.

Hydraform is a member of REDAN (Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria) As a member, she has been privileged to serve as Auditor and Financial Secretary. She has also served on several Committees of REDAN. As regards her experience in the built industry, she considers herself a work in progress and takes opportunities to continuously educate herself by attending seminars and training courses. She also serves on the board of other corporate bodies.


Flora Anne is a Presenter, Producer and Broadcaster. She hosts the popular Housing Development Programme on African Independent Television (AIT ) and on the Nigerian Television Authority(NTA24). An Indigene of Edo State with a Post Graduate Diploma in Journalism from the International Institute of Journalism.
This successful media Practitioner advocates for the provision of affordable housing to Nigerians through her weekly TV Programme. She is a motivational speaker, script writer and a go-getter.

She is the Acting Director of the Pension Commission (PENCOM) of Nigeria. She was a facility Manager with her background in History prior to becoming the acting DG, she is presently acting pending the confirmation of the DG Designate by the Senate. She is renowned in the real estate sector as an advocate of the policy to allow pension usage by husband and wife as a down payment for home purchase.

Engr. Becky Damilola Oke is a Managing Director at Bstan Construction Limited with head office in Lagos.
She heads a Company that is an indigenous and professional construction infrastructure development outfit with world class expertise in Real Estate Development and Global Reinvestments.


Salima Makama is the Managing Director of Shelterplus Nigeria Limited, a comprehensive real estate firm, headquartered in Abuja with branches in Niger State, providing comprehensive commercial and residential real estate services for individuals and Organisations. Shelterplus has undertaken numerous construction projects and specialist works for both private and public sector clients, chief amongst which are the construction of office complexes, school compounds and staff residential estates for several government agencies. Due to their qualifications and experience in the real estate industry, Shelterplus has put together a combination of resources; human, financial and technical, required to effectively initiate, plan and execute construction projects while adhering to time, scope, quality and cost constraints.



She is a Lawyer and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria. She was called to the Nigerian Bar in 2008 and holds a Bachelor of Laws degree (LL.B) from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State. Ewuwuni also holds a Master of Laws degree (LL.M) in Construction Law from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, United Kingdom.

She is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, UK, Nigeria Branch (MCIArb), a Certified Negotiator (Programme on Negotiation, Harvard Law School) and a member of the Society of Construction Law for Africa. She is also a Member, Panel of Neutrals, Cross River State MultiDoor Court House; Member, Panel of Neutrals, Bayelsa State MultiDoor Court House; Member, Panel of Neutrals, Delta State MultiDoor Court House.

Ewuwuni is passionate about her profession and, as the Lead Counsel in the law firm of ONNOGHEN-THEOPHILUS (a full service law chambers which specialises in Construction Law), she has wide experience in negotiating, drafting, executing and interpreting both domestic and international construction contracts.

She is the author of the first Nigerian book on Construction Law titled “Construction Law in Nigeria” and is a leading legal authority on the sector.


Hajia Binta Ibrahim currently serves as the Financial Secretary of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN).  Her Association aims to effectively represent the members to achieve their corporate objectives and to effectively carry on their business as agents of development by ensuring public appreciation of the importance of REDAN and efforts it is making to meet the housing needs of Nigerians. The Association also aims to ensure balanced national legislative, regulatory and fiscal policy to provide the enabling framework and environment for effective housing delivery.


Rahimatu Amina-Aliyu is the Executive Director, Loans and Mortgage Services at the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN). Hajia Rahimatu Aminu-Aliyu is a versatile Legal practitioner with specialty in Finance, Property and International Law. She is an articulate and persuasive negotiator with track record of resolving complex disputes and securing long term funding. Her career goal is to ensure that development is inclusive and sustainable.

Rahimatu Aminu-Aliyu is a widely travelled person with interest in community development; she is an honest and inspirational leader, a strategic thinker with impeccable organizational ability, skilful in oral and written communication, and a responsible and compassionate team player.



Umar Zubaida is the Group Head, Corporate Communications at the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN). She is part of an Organization that provide long-term credit facilities to mortgage institutions in Nigeria and also mobilizing both domestic and offshore funds into the housing sector.


She is a former chairman of Real estate Developers Association of Nigeria, FCT chapter. She has developed over 200 unit of houses and at present embarking gigantic housing project along Zuba axis of Abuja.she was recently elected as vice president of REDAN.

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