Africa is a continent endowed with an abundance of human capital and resources like crude oil and gold that drive the global economy. But despite this huge wealth, the majority of the inhabitants of the continent are suffering and live below the poverty line. However, it is a different story for political and ceremonial leaders on the continent as African presidents are known to be the richest individuals on the continent. There is an unspoken understanding that the office of presidency is the most lucrative position to uphold.
Here are the Top 10 wealthiest presidents in 2022:
10. Abdel Fattah Khalil el-Sisi (Egypt) - $185 million
Abdel Fattah Saeed Hussein Khalil el-Sisi became Egypt's head of state in 2014 and has an estimated net worth of $185 million. Before becoming the president, he served in the army for many years. He resigned from the military in 2014 to run for the position of president. Besides earning from the military and his current position, he owns several investment firms operating in North Africa and overseas.
9. Paul Biya (Cameroon) - $200 million
Paul Biya is a Cameroonian politician who has been ruling the country as its second president since 6 November 1982, making him one of the longest-serving presidents in the world. He is also the oldest head-of-state in Africa at 87 years of age.
Biya’s $200 million net worth has had him up on the list of the richest African presidents for a long time. The Cameroonian spends his wealth lavishly as he is known to take frequent vacations, some lasting up to 3 months at a time, from his country to Switzerland and France. Cameroon's head of state and his family own multiple businesses. They have companies in the timber, oil, banking, transport, and construction sectors.
8. Nana Akufo-Addo (Ghana) - $250 million
Nana Akufo-Addo, the fifth President of Ghana, has an estimated net worth of $250 million. He became the country's head in early January 2017 and was re-elected for his second term in 2020. After completing his education, he worked at the Paris office of the American law firm Coudert Brothers for a few years. Later, he relocated to his home country and founded a law company called Akufo-Addo, Prempeh & Co. He also became a political activist. Besides his law and political career, this president also owns multiple businesses. He has a net worth of $250 million.
7. Patrice Talon (Benin) - $400 million
In 2015, Forbes ranked Patrice Talon as the15th wealthiest sub-Saharan African with an estimated net worth of $400 million. At the time, he was not Benin's head of state. Talon assumed his current position on 6th April 2016. He made his wealth from running multiple businesses, especially in the cotton sector. He also acquired a significant amount of money from running Cotonou's port.
6. Cyril Ramaphosa (South Africa) - $450 million
Cyril Ramaphosa is the fifth President of South Africa. He was previously an anti-apartheid activist, trade union leader, and businessman. He assumed office in 2018 after having served as the 7th Deputy President of the country.
Ramaphosa had all of his education in South Africa. Before holding the highest office in the land, he was a well-known businessman with a large portfolio of investments. He was executive chairman for Shanduka Group which had stakes in the energy, resources, banking, real estate, telecoms, and insurance sectors. The SA leader also previously owned McDonald South Africa. In addition, he was Chair of the board of MTN, and a board member for Lonmin. Other businesses that he was linked with include The Bidvest Group Limited, Macsteel Holdings, Standard Bank, Alexander Forbes, Mondi, and SABMiller.
5. Paul Kagame (Rwanda) - $500 million
Paul Kagame, the president of Rwanda, has an estimated net worth of $500 million. He assumed his current political position in March 2000 and is the nation's fourth president. Kagame’s reign has not been without controversy as he has been accused of corruption, intimidation, political repression, ruling with force, and assassination.
While stirring his country to prosperity, Kagame has been able to amass quite a fortune for himself. Most of his wealth was acquired through the holding company Crystal Ventures which has a stake in almost all sectors of the Rwandan economy.
4. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta (Kenya) - $500 million
The fourth president of Kenya, President Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta has occupied the office of the presidency since the 9th of April 2013, and he is undoubtedly one of the richest men in Kenya. Before becoming a president, he served in the Government as the Minister for Local Government from 2001 to 2002. The former minister turned president accrued a large chunk of his wealth from the real estate industry, owning land of over 500,000 acres in Kenya. In addition to that, he has shares in Brookside Dairies, NCBA Group PLC, Heritage Group of Hotels, Peponi School, Mediamax Group, and Timsales Holdings.
3. Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo (Equatorial Guinea) - $600 million
Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo is one of the wealthiest political leaders with an estimated net worth of $600 million. He became Equatorial Guinea's head of state in 1979 and is one of the longest-serving African presidents. Mbasogo has been accused of massive corruption and abuse of power. Along with his family, they own properties and supercars in the country and France and lead lavish lives. He also earns a significant amount monthly as the head of the country and runs several businesses in different countries.
2. Ali Bongo Ondimba (Gabon) - $1 billion
Ali Bongo Ondimba ranks high on the list of the richest African presidents in 2022. He became the president of Gabon in 2009 and has an estimated net worth of $1 billion. He assumed the presidential position following the demise of his father. During his father's tenure, he held senior government positions, which earned him a lot of money.
Born into a wealthy family, he was educated in a private school in Neuilly, France before going on to study law at The Sorbonne (University of Paris). He later acquired a doctorate degree from the Wuhan University of China but had already joined politics in his home country at the time.
1. King Mohammed VI (Morocco) - $5.7 billion
King Mohammed VI is the current leader of Morocco and has an estimated net worth of $5.7 billion. He assumed the role of king after the passing of his father in 1999. Mohammed VI is a member of the Alaouite dynasty, the present Moroccan royal family.
The richest president in Africa makes his wealth from his presidential salary and vast businesses. He also inherited plenty of wealth from his family. His business investments include banking, mining, tourism, real estate, telecommunications, and cement manufacturing. His family owns 5% shares in Société Nationale d'Investissement (SNI), a holding company that has stakes in Attijariwafa, Management Group, and Centrale Danone.