Africa’s richest man, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, and former United Bank for Africa MD, Mr. Tony Elumelu are amongst three other leaders nominated for the “Person of the Year” category of the Forbes Africa 2012 awards.

According to a statement from Forbes Africa, the 5 individuals were nominated by readers based on their impact on business in Africa in the previous year.

Malawi’s revolutionary President, Joyce Banda, was also nominated. Other nominees include Stephen Saad, Co-founder Aspen Pharmacare, and Dr. James Mwangi, CEO/MD, Equity Bank Limited, Kenya.

The award for the category is intensely contested, as the Chairman of Dangote Group, Dangote, was last year’s runner-up when the award went to Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria.

In the previous year, Dangote’s fortune skyrocketed 557 percent to a networth of $13.8 billion, catapulting him from the 436th position to the 51st on Forbes’ annual billionaires ranking, and attaining the Africa’s richest man status.

In the same year, Dangote Cement was on an aggressive expansion all across Africa, creating thousands of employment opportunities and developing its working environment through responsible corporate social activities.

Banda on the other hand, is Malawi’s first female leader and her administration has embraced investor friendly economic policies; she cut her salary by 30 per cent; sold the presidential jet and a fleet of luxury cars, reducing the Presidency’s expenses and burden on one of the poorest countries in the world where over 90 percent of the population live below the $3 a day budget.

Dr James Mwangi also is a strong contender for the prestigious award. The Kenyan won the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2012 as well as Africa’s Innovation Leader of the Year Award in 2012.

Tony Elumelu, Chairman of Heir Holdings, is the leading crusader of Africapitalism – an economic philosophy that embodies private sector commitment to Africa’s economic transformation through long-term investments. His Tony Elumelu Foundation has effected changes in different African sectors – agriculture, energy, human development, etc.

Stephen Saad is the biggest shareholder of the largest publicly traded drug manufacturer, Aspen. The company has a market capitalisation of $6 billion. Saad became a multimillionaire at 29. Now aged 47, he employs more than 6,000 people.

Forbes has said the winner of the award would be the nominee with the most effective impact on business and economic events in the previous year.

Voting has commenced on the magazine’s website and will end on Thursday, 1 November 2012. The eventual winner be will revealed at an event in Nigeria.


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