Biography of Dr. Alex Ekwueme: First Elected Vice President of Nigeria

This is the biography of Dr. Alex Ekwueme, late former Vice President of Nigeria.


Birth and origin

Dr. Alex Ekwueme was born on October 21, 1932 in Oko, Orumba North Local Government of Anambra State.

Until his death on Sunday, November 19, 2017, Ekwueme was the Ide of the Oko Kingdom in Anambra State, where his younger brother, Prof. Lazarus Ekwueme, reigns as the traditional ruler.

He was also honoured by the Council of Traditional Rulers in the old Aguata as the Ide of Aguata Local Government Area of Anambra State comprising 44 towns.


Ekwueme had his primary school education at the St. John’s Anglican Central School, at Ekwulobia, Anambra State.

His secondary education was at the prestigious King’s College, Lagos.


After being awarded the Fulbright Scholarship in the United States of America, he proceeded to the University of Washington, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture and City Planning. He equally earned a Master’s degree in Urban Planning.

He later earned a doctorate in Architecture at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, United Kingdom.

Ekwueme equally earned degrees in Sociology, History, Philosophy and Law from the University of London.

He was a member of the 1991 set of students at the Nigerian Law School.

Professional career

Ekwueme was a distinguished architect. He started his professional career as an Assistant Architect with a Seattle-based firm, Leo A. Daly and Associates, and also with the London-based firm, Nickson and Partners.

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On his return to Nigeria, he joined ESSO West Africa, Lagos, overseeing its Construction and Maintenance department.

He then went on to create a successful private business with his firm – Ekwueme Associates, Architects and Town Planners, the first indigenous architectural firm in Nigeria.

His practice flourished with 16 offices spread all over Nigeria and was wound up as he prepared to assume office as the first executive Vice-President of Nigeria in 1979.

Ekwueme had presided over the Nigerian Institute of Architects and the Architects Registration Council of Nigeria.


Ekwueme wedded his wife, Beatrice, on December 19, 1959 and their union was blessed with children.


Ekwueme served as Nigeria Vice-President between October 1, 1979 and December 31, 1983.

He served alongside former President Shehu Shagari under the platform of the National Party of Nigeria.


Ekwueme passed on on Sunday, November 19, 2017 at the age of 85 in a London hospital, where he was being treated for a chest-related ailment.




The Author


I am Maduawuchi, the Editor of Nigerian Infopedia. I am a Biochemist, I love God, I love my family and I love my life. Writing is natural to me that's why I love what I do... Captain, Leader, Motivator, Brother and Friend. Saved by Grace alone.

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