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Exclusive: Gilbert Chagoury’s first son dies in Paris
Gilbert Chagoury, hit by tragedy

Exclusive: Gilbert Chagoury’s first son dies in Paris

Gilbert, the older of the famous Chagoury Brothers, who have been doing business in Nigeria for decades has been hit by a monumental tragedy. His first son, Ramez, fondly called Ricco, died in a Paris hospital over the weekend.

Ricco said to be in his 30s has had some health challenges in the past, and everyone thought the worst was over until news broke that he suddenly died on Saturday, June 6, 2014.

Along with his brother, Roland, the Chagoury’s, born in Nigeria to Lebanese parents, are very influential in the Nigerian business environment, they have their hands in many pies including chunk shares in popular Eko Hotel & Suites and the controversial Eko Atlantic project (where they are set to kill the famous Bar Beach). They are usually spotted at events hosted by Nigeria’s rich and famous which is a sign of their connection and influence.

Gilbert and Roland Chagoury with former US President Bill Clinton

Gilbert and Roland Chagoury with former US President Bill Clinton

According to their official website, “The Chagoury Group is an industrial conglomerate with interests in construction, real estate, property development and hotels. The  Chagoury Group own, as well, industries in agribusiness, flour mills, water bottling, glass, aluminium, furniture and other construction-related manufacturing. The Group is also owner of companies in telecommunications, IT, insurance, and international finance”

“A staunch Catholic, Gilbert Chagoury is a friend and confidant to Presidents, Heads of State and business leaders around the world. he is an insider of real-politics and advisor in policy matters and issues of diplomatic sensitivity in West and Central Africa.In 1995, Gilbert Chagoury was appointed Ambassador and Special Representative of UNESCO to St. Lucia.

“Ambassador Chagoury has built a career on acute business acumen with visionary leadership and humble philanthropic service that has made him one of the most highly respected industrialists in the world. But perhaps more than any other single attribute, Ambassador Chagoury has demonstrated a dedication to democracy, peace and the cultivation of healthy, thriving economic environments in which the average person can employ his full range of talents to reach his God-given potential”.

Ricco, we are told, will be buried in Paris, and the Chagoury household have been receiving condolence messages since the tragic news broke.


  1. Words cannot express our sincere condolences for your loss.
    Your family is in our thoughts and prayers at this time.
    Rest in peace, Rico. You will be missed.

  2. Too much cocaine!!!

    • that’s disgustingly rude of you to say, whether it’s true or not. you shouldn’t be calling out someone whose just died, especially not on the internet, where anybody can see it, and obviously know who you are. you may have gone through alot with him but have some respect. you’ve already caused his death as you lead him into this depression by leaving him and not allowing him to see his kids. shame on you.

    • Honestly Stef f you are a woman with no dignity and no honour . You are a disgrace to humanity . You were never worth his shoes . Coz what you just said shows how much u lack of honour and dignity . You were surely nothing and you will always be nothing . And there is a God to judge but be sure the ones who die earlier are loved by god , he will be resting in heaven and you will be living your hell life . It kills u that he died because you will never be able to make him suffer with his children . The end is coming to all of us . Ramez is lucky , he will be given all the love up in heaven . As for you , hate will eat u deep inside coz there is only hate and evil in you . We don’t critisize the dead , it is a very very very unforgiven sin . You are a really disgrace to humanity !!!!!!

    • Your a heartless idiot, don’t talk about things you have to clue about.

  3. Mireille fattal

    No! It’s not about ” too much cocaine”!!!!
    I just don’t understand how someone who seems to have it all can can go ahead on such a destructive path. It’s just senseless!!
    Alcohol and drugs have ruined and killed so many lives!!

    I am sorry for your loss. Rest in peace!!

    • Mireille, … the last days I read the condolences over and over and I can t get through… Rico was such a great person, he had such a lovely soul, made everybody laugh & helped where he could… he was great hearted…with his beautiful brown eyes and his bride smile…why he couldn `t stay longer than a while…an aura he had that shown like a star…damn…how it s possible, that noone could help… he was lonely & sad… If only we could turn back the time…. I m shocked… sad & there s no word which can take the grief away… My dear friend Rico, rest in peace, god bless your soul…we miss you until we meet again…. <3 …~

  4. its ronald not roland. and he was 45 not in his 30s.

    • ….for the last 3 years Rico was in my daughter’s life. Alexandra Louise.
      They had a life. I have been in it. He called me “mom” he experienced the joy of love and life with her and he was experiencing family for the first time in a long time. I feel sorry for Rico. He did not have the love he should have felt from a mother and father.
      Excess and money is not what family is about. It’s unfortunate. He is not above ground and breathing with me. I will miss the laughter within his eyes.
      Rico you are the “best”!

  5. I cant believe in this difficult times and on the death of our beloved Rico I can read such a shit comment, whatch out karma is a bitch, as for his ex wife it shows the level of this woman, Rico use to think not much of you as well, he was right

  6. Rico. RIP. Sweet and kind friend. From long ago in Nigeria. You were chivalrous and a gentleman. You will be missed and revered. I will always hold you in the highest of regards. I hope you are singing “Strangers In The Night” with Sinatra himself!
    You are loved. Xx

  7. I can’t believe this happened to someone who was so full of life and made everyone around him smile. Rico was an amazing person and his joyful essence touched everyone he came in contact with. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family. His soul was good and pure and now he finally has peace.

  8. Toute mes condoléances à la famille et à ses enfants. RICO etait pour moi un frère, une personne avec un grand coeur. Vivant à la réunion je n’ai pu venir à l’enterrement , cela m’a fait beaucoup du mal.SA vie privée, ne regardait que lui. Personne n’a le droit de le juger. Suis de tout coeur avec vous ..il me manquera bcp et aussi à son filleul. Vois êtes une famille avec grand coeur. Soyez fort . RICO tu nous manqueras et tu resteras tjrs dans mon esprit .RIP.
    Carine .

  9. My heart goes out to the Chagoury family! Deepest sympathy and condolences to you all. May his soul rest in peace!

  10. Encountered roland on their debut/maiden Road/bridge bridge construction for the LASG at Eleko beeach as the resudent engineer. …his simplicity phenomenal.
    I commiserate on the death of Ricco, may his soul rest in perfect peace.
    May such occurrence be far from the family after now.

  11. Cuz,my heart goes out to you and your family.My heart hurts for you.Take care my friend.I send you my love and respect.

  12. Alexandre Amjad Katrangi

    RIP my Rico…. An old Friend from a long long time ago when we used to hang out in Paris and south of france together and with your brother Gilbert, Aurelie, etc…..
    This makes me back something like 15/20 years ago with excellent souvenirs …!!!
    I definitely would have loved to hear back from you in 2015 through our common friend in a different manner….. This is really sad and present my deepest condolences to your brothers and family….RIP…


  14. My dear friend,
    I tried to contact you several times since I left France and few days ago I found the news about your death. It took me by surprise and I can not believe it. I will always carry in my mind our nights together in Pink and other places and our long conversation about your life and your family. I hope that you made up relation with your father and your wife and I hope you will rest in peace my friend.

  15. J’apprends bien tardivement que tu nous as quitté , je garde en mémoire nos fous rire à la Tourelle ou on s’est connus, nos partis de monopoly chez toi et des années plus tard nos soirées sur la côte. Tu ne manquais jamais de m écrire pour mon anniversaire. Reposes en paix mon pote.

  16. Rico my friend
    you made me laugh when i couldnt smile you were there for me when we both were trying to improve and make changes in our lifes we kept in touch for a while dinner with you and alex a few times i had tried to reach out to you many times was worried about you had even wrote letter to your mom and dad but never sent it wish i could have helped you the way you helped me never would have been here today without your help showing me how full of life you were even the ups and downs you were always someone i looked for to make me laugh or someone to talk too. never forgotten rest in peace Rico

  17. One less Lebanese criminal.

    In 1996, Gilbert Chagoury donated $460,000 to a controversial Miami-based Democratic voter-registration group called Vote Now 96. As a foreign citizen, Chagoury is barred from donating directly to elected officials or political parties. But his three contributions of $200,000, $10,000, and $250,000, made in September and October 1996, were completely legal because Vote Now 96 was a nonprofit organization.

    Just two months after making his six-figure donations, Chagoury was among the 250 guests who attended the Clintons’ White House Christmas party.

    2. Chagoury was convicted of laundering millions.

    In 2000, Switzerland convicted Chagoury of money-laundering and “aiding a criminal organization in connection with the billions of dollars stolen from Nigeria during the [Sani] Abacha years” of military dictatorship, according to a PBS Frontline report. Chagoury later entered a plea deal, and the charges were expunged.

    3. Chagoury’s name was once on a federal no-fly list.

    After the failed Christmas day bombing of an American passenger plane by Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab in 2010, Chagoury’s name was added to a federal terrorist no-fly list. The billionaire admitted to being an acquaintance of Abdulmutallab’s father, who is a Nigerian banker.

    4. Chagoury was named a “kingpin” of Nigerian corruption.

    In July 2004, Nigeria’s then-top anti-corruption prosecutor, Nuhu Ribadu, watched as Chagoury’s private jet landed and then, abruptly, took off — allowing the corrupt businessman to escape arrest.

    Ribadu’s office spent years building a corruption case against Chagoury, who was once a senior adviser to Nigeria’s longtime dictator Sani Abacha.

    According to a PBS Frontline report, “Ribadu says that Chagoury made it possible for Abacha to steal billions of dollars and lined his own pockets in the process.”

    5. Chagoury admitted in British court to bribery.

    In 2001, the construction magnate confessed in a British court to assisting the family of deceased Nigerian dictator, Sani Abacha, in transferring $300 million into foreign bank accounts.

    Despite Chagoury’s many troubling transgressions, the Clinton Foundation gladly accepted a $1-$5 million donation from the nefarious figure.

    It is also worth noting that Chagoury’s company, the Chagoury Group, pledged $1 billion to the Clinton Global Initiative in 2009, the same year the Clinton Global Initiative awarded the Chagoury Group its annual prize for “sustainable development.” The money pledged was at the heart of Sen. David Vitter’s (R) probe into whether Chagoury’s cozy relationship with the Clintons played a roll in Clinton’s State Department’s delay of a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) designation on Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram; an FTO classification would have severely hampered Chagoury’s business endeavors in Nigeria.

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