SUNU plans to immortalise founder with pan-African prize

The SUNU Group has revealed plans to institute a pan-African prize to immortalise its late founder and president, Mr. Pathe’ Dione.

In a statement shared with our correspondent on Monday, the group said the country be instituted in Dione’s honour because he had left a legacy in all the countries where the company operates.

The Managing Director of SUNU Assurances, Mr Samuel Ogbodu, described the late Dione as an eminent player in the financial services sector, who devoted his life to contributing to the development of Africa by Africans and for Africans.

Ogbodu said, “A Pan-African prize called the Pathe DIONE Prize will soon be established in all countries where the SUNU Group is present, in homage to Mr Dione’s vision to serve Africa.”

He added that the late SUNU Group founder put in place a trust that runs the group but whose members, including his children cannot sell it.

He said, “The trust indicates that SUNU Group would continue to run for life. Even the children cannot take over the company. There is a trust deed already that manages the company. This is exceptional because most owner companies, especially those founded by individuals die and crumble when the founder dies. But this will not be the case for SUNU Group.

“Our late founder did marvellous things. For instance, he was able to establish the solo group, which comprises several insurance companies, health insurance, banking and microfinance, among others. He was able to do this in 17 African countries. In totality, he established 34 companies in 17 African countries. It’s hard to find a single individual to do this. He has done very well for our profession and humanity.”

The SUNU Assurance MD added that Dione believed in the development of human resources, saying “The greatest asset of any nation can have is human resources. He believes so much in training and development of staff.”

The Managing Director of SUNU Health, Dr Patrick Korie, added that Dione was a great pan-Africanist.

“He is a man who started from financial services to health, hospitality services, estate and among others. All these were developed in Africa for Africans. He currently has companies in 17 African countries and is still expanding in Anglo and francophone (countries). He believes we have the resources and he put in the effort.

“Today, the resources are here and we have a pan-African country, all from the fruit of his labour. He has left a path and we are striving to keep that path in the health services. He left a path for us to follow and it is, ‘Humanity is the Center of our Ambition’.”

According to a former Executive Director of SUNU Assurances, Mr Leke Hassan, Dione was a wonderful man, missionary and entrepreneur.

“He was a man of vision and he lived for humanity. He had a vision of servicing Africa and Africans through insurance position and provided a global platform for Africans to access excellent insurance policies across Africa.”

Dione, who founded the SUNU Group about 24 years ago, died in 2023 aged 81 years.

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