|Umaru Abdul Mutallab|
December 15, 1939 |
Katsina Town, Nigeria
|Residence||Funtua, Katsina State|
|Alma mater||Barewa College, Zaria; Achimota College, Accra, Ghana; and South West London College, London|
|Known for||Former Chairman of First Bank of Nigeria; father of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab|
|Awards||Nigerian Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON); Italian Commander of the Order of Merit|
Alhaji Umaru Abdul Mutallab (born December 15, 1939) is a Nigerian business and banking leader, and former minister of Economic Development under the military government of Murtala Mohammed. He played a major role in introducing Islamic banking into Nigeria. Mutallab was described by The Times in 2009 as being "one of the richest men in Africa", by The New York Times as "among Nigeria’s richest and most prominent men," by The Telegraph as being "one of Nigeria's most prominent bankers", and by The Guardian as being "one of the country's most respected businessmen". Mutallab's son, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, is a student who attempted to detonate plastic explosives aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 on December 25, 2009.
Mutallab was born in Katsina Town, Katsina State, Nigeria. He lives in Funtua, in Katsina State in Muslim north Nigeria, though reportedly the family owns homes in London and Ghana as well. The family owns at least three homes in Nigeria, including the one in Funtua (with ten bedrooms, and its own silver-domed mosque), one in Kaduna, and a "palatial" home in Abuja.
Mutallab attended Barewa College, Zaria, Achimota College, Accra, Ghana, and the South West London College, London. He was awarded an honorary doctoral degree by the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. .
Mutallab was a Federal Commissioner (i.e., Minister) of Economic Development (1975) and of Cooperatives and Supplies (1976). He was later a member of Nigeria's Federal Executive Council (1976–78). He left to serve as Executive Vice Chairman, Managing Director, and CEO of the United Bank for Africa (UBA) (1978–88).
Mutallab has also served on the boards of directors of several companies, including Arewa Textile Limited, NEPA, NACB, NCC, Nigeria Agip Oil, and Cement Company of Nigeria, and in 2009 was Chairman of several companies, including Impressit Bakolori Plc, Incar Nigeria Plc, and Spring Waters Nigeria Limited (SWAN).
He is chairman of the Nigeria's first Islamic bank, Jaiz Bank International Plc, which was established in 2003.
Mutallab is chairman of the Business Working Group of the Vision 20:2020 Committee in Nigeria, and president of the Old Boys Association of Barewa College. He is a Fellow of both the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (FCCA) and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (FCA).
Son: Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab
On December 25, 2009, his 23-year-old son Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the youngest of his 16 children and a son of the second of his two wives (who is from Yemen), was implicated in the attempted bombing of Northwest Airlines Flight 253.
He agreed in July 2009 to his son's request to return to the San'a Institute for the Arabic Language in Yemen to study Arabic from August to September 2009. His son apparently left the Institute after a month, while remaining in-country. In October, his son sent him a text message saying that he wanted to study sharia and Arabic in a seven-year course in Yemen. His father threatened to cut off his funding, whereupon his son said he was “already getting everything for free”. When his father asked who would sponsor him, Mutallab replied "That's none of your business." He texted his father: "I've found a new religion, the real Islam". And ultimately, "You should just forget about me, I'm never coming back", “Please forgive me. I will no longer be in touch with you”, and "Forgive me for any wrongdoing, I am no longer your child".
His father made a report to two CIA officers at the U.S. Embassy in Abuja, Nigeria, on November 19, 2009, regarding his son's "extreme religious views", and told the embassy that he might be in Yemen. Acting on the report, his son's name was added in November 2009 to the US's 550,000-name Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment, a database of the U.S. National Counterterrorism Center. It was not added, however, to the FBI's 400,000-name Terrorist Screening Database, the terror watch list that feeds both the 14,000-name Secondary Screening Selectee list and the US's 4,000-name No Fly List. Nor was his U.S. visa revoked. A little over a month later, his son, directed by al-Qaeda in Yemen, tried without success to blow up a U.S. flight to Detroit, Michigan.
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