ForeverMissed
Husband, father and friend.
This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, Oluseyi Bickersteth. We will remember him forever.
Posted by Paul Agyiri on March 11, 2021
I was full of admiration for Uncle Seyi.

His love for auntie Catherine, Melody and Amy was one to envy and his care for people beyond his nuclear family was second to none.

He and auntie Catherine were extremely generous to his in-laws, through acts of kindness and monetarily on countless occasions, several of which helped pave the way for my accomplishments to date.
 
Uncle Seyi was also very humble. He would stay with my family when he visited Ghana sometimes, when he could be having a luxury experience in a 5 star hotel! That always baffled me, but spoke to his values of humility, simplicity and family.
 
Uncle Seyi, I will miss you dearly. I will miss your infectious positive attitude, the times we used to laugh over stories of who I would possibly end up marrying and where it would be, our chats about fitness and the generosity you and your family always showed mine.

Thank you so much for all you did for us, Uncle Seyi. The impact on the lives you touched and your legacy will forever live on. Until we meet again - rest in perfect peace, Uncle Seyi.
 
Love, 
Kwame
Posted by Olasumbo Ogunmowo on March 11, 2021
Dear Uncle Seyi,
Its just so surreal talking about you in the past tense...you will surely be missed. Your dance steps , your jokes, seeing you with our dearest aunty Cat. I can't remember not seeing you without her. Rest well Uncle in the Bosom of our God Almighty.
Sumbo Ogunmowo
Posted by Imo Oyewole on March 11, 2021
IN LOVING MEMORY OF OLUSEYI...

Wondering why I called him Steve? Well one day, my scatter brain “autocorrect” erroneously corrected his name from “Seyi” to “Steve” and unfortunately for me I did not catch it before hitting the send button! Seyi did not let me live it down! He very seriously insisted that there was a “suitor” going by the name Steve in my life and demanded to meet and “screen him before our “introduction” ceremony. Dear Lord! Well, since I could not convince him otherwise, I decided to “flip the script” on him so, I happily named him, “Steve” and it stuck!!!
Such was Seyi’s (Uncle Seyi to the Oyewole, Olajumoke, Seni and I) fun loving humour! He was quick to make light of the most serious matters to diffuse any form of tension or stress and make you laugh even when you didn’t feel like it but left you feeling much better!

In knowing Seyi as “loving and beloved” husband to my dearest friend and sister Catherine over the last thirty four years I join my heart with others in thanking our God Almighty for the remarkable human being that God gifted us in Seyi. I always marvelled at how Seyi balanced his career and family for while he gave his all to work, NOTHING... not even that work could come between him and his family Catherine, Melody and Amy.
Work-life balance personified!!! He was generous with his time and he was generous with his wise counsel to us all who reached out to him. He simply loved helping and giving!

An exemplary family man who loved his family to bits; steering the education and career paths of his daughters along with Catherine. He also loved outdoor life be it walking, cycling, or simply enjoying the quiet and gentle breeze in their well manicured garden playing a good game of scrabble with Catherine or the girls. Why, I do remember that one of the selling points to Seyi for their last move, was the garden!

And now Uncle Seyi has left us on this side of eternity for THE GARDEN of all gardens on the other side of eternity at the feet of Jesus.
If only it wasn’t so sudden, if only you just said a goodbye, Seyi?
BUT GOD knows best, knows ALL, and who am I to question the Sovereign Lord!!!
As heart wrenching as his separation may be, we choose and we determine to yield to the sovereignty of Our great and mighty God Who knows the end from the beginning, Who does ALL things well and Who is in absolute control of everything! And in this as with all things, we give Him thanks! Yes we do!

We choose to trust Him for He IS and will ALWAYS BE a Good Good Father!

So with the comfort of the knowledge of Who our God IS, we say our goodbye to our precious, precious Seyi, Uncle Seyi and Steve in this way as we pray God’s comfort, strength and peace for Catherine, Melody and Amy, in the mighty name of Jesus Christ glorified. Amen!

God rest your precious soul, our forever loved Uncle Seyi!

Imoabasi “Sunshine” Oyewole
March 11, 2021.

Posted by Yimika Adeboye on March 11, 2021
OTB!!
Seyi was my first boss when I returned to Nigeria in 1992 and joined Arthur Andersen. He really struggled to be my boss simply because he treated me like his little sister. He teased, bullied, scolded, and monitored me closely.
I was single when I joined the firm. Seyi made several failed match-making attempts. He grilled every potential “prospector”. I recall the expression on his face when he asked me if it was true that I was dating Ayodele! Then he went ahead in his usual manner to conduct a grilling session.
I left Arthur Andersen in 1994 and recall Seyi telling me that he now has every right to be big brother.
Seyi was (I struggle with this word) particular about his health. When he lived in VGC, he was in the gym, then would cycle and finally walk! I thought I was a fitness freak but he was “senior brother” here. He would walk with my Mum every time he met her “pounding the pavements” of VGC. He threatened to take her on as his second wife and I started calling him “Dadi”, a name that always brought a massive smile to Seyi’s face.
Seyi enjoyed life. Kind, generous, fun and caring.
Heaven has gained a lovely man.
OTB, sun re O.
Posted by Yinka Idowu on March 11, 2021
A RARE GEM LIVES ON – Precious memories never die.

My precious Egbon,
   My forever young brother,
     My co-locals as Catherine and Koye calls us.
       My mentor
         My gist partner
          God father to my girls
            Our Papy of life and so much more…

I am struggling to be a part of this tribute as am still in denial but for you – it has to be done.

Oluseyi, our family chain is suddenly broken and nothing will be the same without you – the missing link.

Your untimely departure has left a deep cut but for your amazing, fulfilling and beautiful life and memories that will forever live in our hearts.

Seyi, Egbon mi, you are truly loved, you will never be forgotten; our heart is where you will always be!

The good Lord calls us one by one, the broken link will surely be linked again, when we all meet to part no more, in the bosom of the most high. Your memories will forever be a blessing!.

With my undying love,
Your Yinkoy (your pet name for me)

Yinka Idowu
Posted by Princess Adefolami Idowu on March 11, 2021
Dear Uncle Seyi,
You were much more than my parents’ friend and Godfather to my sisters,
You taught me , that in life , one must do what makes them happy, You taught me to value my family, You taught me that for as long as I can move my limbs, I should remain agile, enjoying my mental and body to it’s fullest potential, You taught me to find joy and bring laughter into every experience with my loved ones. You probably never knew this but your waves every morning before going off to work was what lifted my mood most days, every time I saw you jogging faster and cycling longer than me in the gym, motivated me to push further.
How could I ever forget your sense of humour on our drive to Cycling on how you’ll challenge me on the races. You made the workout look so effortless.
You taught me a lot Uncle Seyi, I’m grateful to have been able to have learnt so much from you.
I’ll miss you, your smile and morning waves.
Sleep well Uncle. May God give Aunty Catherine, Melody and Amy comfort at this time.

Princess Adefolami Idowu
Posted by duchess idowu on March 11, 2021
Dear Uncle Seyi
You were always very kind to me.

You always served as great motivation anytime I crossed paths with you at the gym!

I will always remember you as a genuine best friend to my parents.

I will miss your friendly smiles.

I pray that you will rest well in peace and that God will continue to bless and keep your family. Amen.

Duchess Idowu
Posted by Bayo Adeleke on March 11, 2021
Seyi - A Great friend is Something to Cherish.

My heart aches at the thought of never seeing you again, but the memories of the friendship, love and the bond between us and our families will endure and never forgotten.

My dear Chairman (as I fondly call you) Seyi, you are one of a kind. A beautiful human being and a brilliant mind. Incredible family man, who found inner peace and joy within his good family and a small circle of friends. A thorough-bred professional and a mentor to many. Your simplicity and humility are exceptional and indeed rare, for a person of your accomplishments.

Pity, you had to leave before our two families made the holiday we both wanted and often talked about. You charmed your way into and got admitted to the all girls club - “ATM” (of Amena, Tola and Melody) and changed it to “ATMS” with your initial “S” added, but made membership an uphill task for me. I guess I didn’t have your charm.

Rest in peace, Seyi. Adieu, to a wonderful friend. A true friend is never truly gone.

May the good Lord give CB, Mel and Amy strength to carry on.

Bayo Adeleke
Posted by Okey Enelamah on March 11, 2021
Many of us are still coming to terms with the reality that you have finished your race. It has been said that we live life forward but understand it looking back. As I reflect on your life, you lived a rich and fulfilling life. The things you chose to do, you did very well! Marriage, family, career, human relations, mentoring, loving and caring for your neighbor. And the list goes on!

We built a special bond over the years that strengthened as our two families became close. You were a mentor and senior colleague in Arthur Andersen. You became a trusted business advisor as we established ACA. When I had the opportunity to serve in government, you gave me your full support and wise counsel. And I know as special as my relationship with you was, it is just one example of how you gave so much and impacted so many! You truly lived a life of impact and significance. Well done, Seyi!

OTB, as you were fondly called, you gave life your best and your all! God knows why He chose to call you home at this time. The Bible tells us that God’s ways are higher than our ways, and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts. Our confidence is in God’s faithfulness, even when we don’t fully understand what He is doing. 

We trust God to fill the void created by your unexpected exit. May the Lord, Himself, comfort and strengthen your wonderful wife, Catherine, the children, Melody and Amy, the entire family and the many people who are mourning your passing from this earthly sojourn to eternity.

You were the best! And you will be missed!

Adieu my brother, friend and mentor till we meet in eternity.

Okey Enelamah
Posted by Tola Adeleke on March 11, 2021
Dearest Uncle Seyi,

Thank you for being an amazing husband to my second mum, thank you for being the best Dad to my sisters Melody and Amy. Thank you for being a dependable friend and brother to my parents. You have been in my life for as long as I can remember and it is hard to reconcile that you will no longer be there physically. I know that you are still here in spirit, this and the memories we have shared over 30 years gives me the greatest comfort.

Over the years, you and Aunty have been there for my family in many ways to count. We will miss all the inside jokes, my particular favourite is when you called my mum ‘thigh-to thigh’. I recently asked mummy what this meant; I have coined my own meaning- as families we have been thigh – to- thigh (side by side) growing together. Our families will continue to be thigh- to-thigh honouring your memory.

You will always be a member of the ATMS (Amena, Tola, Melody & Seyi) crew – another inside joke.

The most recent memory I will cherish is our video call on my birthday in January, it meant a lot to see you and Aunty calling from the garden you loved soo much.

Uncle Seyi, we will miss your swagger, your humour and intellect, but you will always be next to us- thigh-to-thigh.

Lots of Love,
Tola, Yewande & Yinka (Adeleke) 
Posted by Joe Uwagba on March 11, 2021
It is with a very heavy heart and profound sadness that I write this tribute to a close family friend, a colleague and a gentleman in the person of Oluseyi whom I have known for over forty years.
I first met Seyi in Lagos at Arthur Andersen & Co. He had joined the firm a little over nine months before I joined in July 1979. Throughout the time I served at AA & Co before moving on in January 1989, I was in regular and constant touch with him as we both worked on many audit assignments before he moved on to the tax division. In fact, Seyi is the only person I know who worked in all three divisions (audit, consulting & tax) of the firm. This is itself a testimony to his cerebral prowess, an aptitude for learning new tricks of a trade and an incredible ability to adjust and adapt to new circumstances. Little wonder he was able to deliver first class and unblemished professional service to all his clients. Undoubtedly, these qualities saw him rise to the very pinnacle of his calling. Although it is a very long time ago now, there is no forgetting the fond and cherished memories of some of the assignments and engagements on which we both worked. Space, not time, limits me to just three of them.
As freshmen in accounting and audits, we were severely challenged when we worked at TOPCON, the exploratory arm of Texaco in Nigeria. The accounting terminologies were far from the routine exposures during the rigorous training sessions we had had. The technicalities of oil & gas accounting were, to say the least, exasperating. Even though we did not want the client staff to perceive our ignorance, most of us on this assignment were often moody as we had to wade through a confusing maze of accounting jargon and an unwieldy system. However, as daunting as the task was, Seyi managed to have a smile on his face all the time. He was not unduly fazed by the very long hours we had to put in. Indeed, Seyi got on with the client’s staff so well that they all felt at ease with him whenever he came asking questions and probing with the typical forensic disposition of auditors.
Then, there was the time we were shipped off to the Detroit office with two other colleagues for basic training in the firm’s Management Information Consulting techniques & methodologies. We found ourselves in the deep end of a pool – learning how to code in some obscure computer language in order to work on a major new assignment for the firm in Lagos. All four of us were often in a state of quandary. We had to do this coding stuff which was basically writing in dots and strokes. Whilst we were trying to find our feet, Seyi quickly grasped the nettle and within a relatively short time, he too started to speak using weird symbols, dots and strokes. He even had some time to spare for watching his favourite sports: football (not soccer!) and basketball. Sadly, we were not able to put our newly acquired skills into use. By the time we returned to Lagos, the contract for the project in question had been “pulled”. Much to our collective relief, we were re-transferred to the audit division.
Seyi and I worked on many other assignments and projects in Lagos, Warri, Kaduna, Maiduguri, Port-Harcourt, Abidjan and Dakar. But the most exciting and thoroughly exhilarating assignment we both enjoyed was a yearly one week stint auditing the accounts of a client at Mkar, some five miles north of Gboko in Benue state. We were the only ones in the office who ‘volunteered’ to go to this outpost, the local branch of a Utah based missionary organisation. It was a hardship location in every sense. The assignment was more of an endurance test than a professional challenge. We would travel to Makurdi by air, then to Gboko by taxi and thereafter to Mkar by mini trucks. Upon arrival at Mkar, our first task was to go to the local village market to do some food shopping for the week. We were responsible for preparing our meals throughout our stay. Our bedrooms were not the safest abodes as we were constantly advised to be on the lookout for deadly poisonous snakes that may crawl in at night, creep through the bed sheets and inflict their deadly bites. I recall Seyi aways joked that at Mkar, one must be able to sleep with one eye open.
The books of account at Mkar were more of a challenge to our linguistic abilities than our accounting / audit skills. The trial balance was partially in Tiv language. This had to be fully translated into English and properly coded before we could proceed to the tasks at hand. We tried to not ruffle our clients by asking too many questions. The staff was very polite and quite helpful. As always, Seyi was very fond of them – joking, back slapping, teasing and even playing pranks. By the end of the week, it was obvious that his vocabulary of the Tiv language had been enhanced. For many years after and as recently as a few weeks ago, Seyi and I started our conversations in customary Tiv greetings.
The news of Seyi’s sudden death is one of the toughest and shocking matters that I have had to grapple with in all of my life. I just could not process it. Coming so soon after the burial of his sister, Kehinde, I found myself asking and wondering if this was a morbid or cruel joke. Alas, it is true. So I am tempted to join in the mournful wailing and shedding of tears. But I do not want to do that. Rather, I want to dwell on the notion that it is not how long we live that matters. It is how well. Seyi lived a full, happy and fulfilled life in ALL its ramifications. With Seyi around, there was always laughter and fun. Wherever he was, Seyi uplifted the mood in his own special way. He was a thoroughly compassionate, caring, kind-hearted and loving individual and family man. There was nothing that could stand in the way of him being in touch with the three girls in his life – Catherine, Melody and Amy. Our daughters have mournfully remarked that Uncle Seyi was the first person they knew as an uncle – well before growing up to know the real meaning of that word.
Seyi was not one to burden others with his problems. He was not one to allude to innocuous and nebulous “ethical standards” in a way that was pretentious or even hypocritical. He strived to live what he preached – Peace, Love and Happiness. Even the way of his departure was without any fuss: quietly and peacefully; in his sleep. 

A certified Life Coach, Rob Liano tells us: “the sorrow we feel when we lose a loved one is the price to have had them in our lives”. My thoughts are with you, my dearest friend. Your memories linger. Your smile that cared; your listening ear, your goodness shared. My wish is your restful eternal peace.
Adieu my good friend, Oluseyi.
Joe Uwagba
Thursday, 11 March, 2021
Posted by KUNLE ELEBUTE on March 11, 2021
I joined AA in 1988 in the Tax division working with Toyin Munis, Seyi & Imo. Over the years I developed a lot of respect for Seyi’s leadership, client interactions & deep technical knowledge of Tax & fiscal matters which he expanded to a deep understanding of the economy & what we needed to do to improve our great country which he was passionate about. Outside of work he was the benchmark for keeping fit & healthy and none of us could keep up with him in this area. He had a great sense of humour and was a people person in all respects, always looking to hire & retain the best talent at all levels. He was passionate about family life & kept reminding all his colleagues & friends that family comes first in whatever we did in our careers and he was a great example in this area with the way he related with Catherine & in discussions about his wonderful daughters, Melody & Amy. He led KPMG Nigeria to be No. 1 in the country & also in Africa and was well respected across the KPMG global network. To me personally, Seyi was not only my partner, he was my mentor, leader & older brother, I learnt a lot from him & benefited from his knowledge & wisdom which has been a great impact in my role since I succeeded him as Senior Partner & a year after as Africa Chairman & member of the EMA & Global boards. His leadership will forever be remembered. My entire family (Lara, Demola, Deji, Derin & I) express our deep condolences to Catherine & the girls and May his soul rest in peace, Amen.
Posted by Sally Udoma on March 11, 2021
Seyi’s death came as a devastating shock. A man of honour and integrity who reached the heights of his profession, a gentle and caring person, we have read the testimony of so many that he helped along the way. He was an adoring husband to Catherine and loving father to their girls. He will be sorely missed. May Seyi’s soul rest in perfect peace and may God uphold, strengthen and protect Catherine, Melody and Amy as they come to terms with his loss. May God comfort them and guide them; may His Grace be always upon them.
Sally and Udoma
Posted by Tumi Odunlami on March 11, 2021
Seyi, was a truly remarkable leader. Humble in his approach, with a gait that was enviable.

You will truly be missed.

Rest on Boss !!!
Posted by Nkoyo Rapu on March 11, 2021
Seyi Bickersteth, A brother, A friend!

In your passing, we remember you fondly. Meeting you and Catherine for the first time was like connecting with a family we had known for ages. We have beautiful memories of time spent in your garden in VGC. Vivid recollections of Melody, Amy, Uju and Kene our daughters at play. A blissful season for which we are thankful.

We remember you; jolly, jovial, good-humoured, yet astute, sharp,-witted and brilliant. You always teased Tony and I calling us your own variations of our names. You would typically call out from your garden seat as you saw us approaching – “Oseloka” “Odo/Aunty N”. With you, there was never a dull moment.

Whenever we wanted an atmosphere of leisure and relaxation, we thought of you. Just recently on the 14th of February 2021, we chatted about planning a much-needed trip to a private beach in Lagos. As usual, Catherine our headmistress and caretaker was to execute the plan. It never took place.

Surely, we will miss you but we hold on to these cherished memories. We remember you and Tony in deep thoughtful conversations during our outings, on the subject of your wardrobes; exchanging ideas on fashion, staying young and dapper. We remember you as a dutiful and doting father; a loving husband and companion to Catherine; a cheerful, peaceful and amiable friend. We recall your quiet and yet reassuring presence at our Christmas Cantata concerts and Crossover Night Services.

To say we would miss you is an understatement. The knowledge of Eternal Life in Christ is our consolation. We pray God’s comfort and care over Catherine, Melody and Amy, as well as your entire family.

Tony & Nkoyo Rapu
Posted by Nana Yaw Prempeh on March 11, 2021
Uncle Seyi; although my memories of you are very few, these words I’m about to say still hold truth. I was saddened by the news of your untimely pass.
You were truly an inspiration,
knowing you was a blessing.
During these trying times I can’t begin to imagine what those closest to you are feeling.
But in their hearts you continue to live,
Your laughter and your kindness,
I shall never be forgetting.
Your memories we shall forever be treasuring.

Dearest Auntie, Melody & Amy 
You have my deepest condolences. I can’t begin to imagine what you are going through. I wish I knew the right words to say or correct prayer to pray. You are in my thoughts during these sad days.
Posted by Aggie Prempeh on March 11, 2021
Dear "uncle Seyi" our son in law, we cannot yet comprehend that you are no longer with us. There is an immense pain and hole in our hearts. It was never the plan that you should depart before us. Without exaggeration it is only God who truly knows what you have meant to us as a son in law. "uncle Seyi" we have been blessed to have you not just as loving husband and father to our daughter Catherine and grandchildren Melody and Amy but as a true son in law. You have not only been an integral part of our own lives you have actually saved our lives on many occasions through various interventions and interactions. "uncle Seyi" we owe you the debt of our lives today and wish God could have spared you but it wasn't to be. Forever in the hearts of your in-laws Joseph & Lily Sarpong RIP.
Posted by Lee Obomeghie on March 11, 2021
A professional, a family man, a friend, a mentor. May the Lord be pleased with him
Posted by Emeka Onwuka on March 11, 2021
It’s so shocking to lose Seyi at this time for his family and ours. Seyi was my senior friend and mentor, my first boss who made me most of what I am today. He remained my Counselor and professional guardian till the morning of March 2, at 11.11 am when we spoke for 14 minutes and I never knew that was our last interaction.

Seyi was a fine Professional in all respects and a true class act.

Myself and Theresa will miss him sorely and our prayers are with Catherine, Melody and Amy as we can only imagine what this period presents to them.

Fare thee well Seyi.
Posted by Yinka Idowu on March 11, 2021


Dear "Uncle Seyi" our son-in-law,
We cannot yet comprehend that you are no longer with us. There is an immense pain and hole in our hearts. It was never the plan that you should depart before us. Without exaggeration it is only God who truly knows what you have meant to us as a son in law.
“Uncle Seyi" we have been blessed to have you not just as loving husband and father to our daughter Catherine and grandchildren Melody and Amy but as a true son-in-law. You have not only been an integral part of our own lives you have actually saved our lives on many occasions through various interventions and interactions. "Uncle Seyi" wish God could have spared you but it wasn't to be. Forever in the hearts of your in-laws Joseph & Lily Sarpong RIP.
Posted by Aderonke Onadeko on March 11, 2021
Deliberate, Intentional and Purposeful Living

I salute you Mr Oluseyi Bickersteth aka 'MrB'.

I knew you first as
an athlete,
a cyclist,
a gym enthusiast,
a devoted husband and a doting father.

You were young at heart and drew every type of person to you. I remember many of your amusing anecdotes and jokes that spice up our conversations.

You were principled, always calm and soft spoken, careful in your analysis of business, economic and national matters. You dispensed information and counsel with humility, wisdom and in an effortless manner. You were disciplined, regimental and measured about work, exercise and food.

I pay tribute to you today as Nigeria has lost a repository of knowledge on both a professional and national level. You gave graciously and generously of your time, intellect and assets.

You left this space when the demand for you was highest, when there were witnesses to attest on a first hand basis of your feats and capacity, when your many tribes can mourn you earnestly.

Adieu MrB, you will be missed sorely. Rest in peace
Posted by Niji Adelagun on March 11, 2021
People talk about the likes of Awolowo as a once in a generation phenomenon, MrB was made from the same mold of the Awolowo type. Mr Bs was all about solving problems in Nigeria, drawing us closer to meritocracy, allowing our best to come to the fore for the benefit of all and supporting and financing social safety nets through charities

Mr B was my most respected Nigerian, I absolutely adored him and his wife, (they can’t be separated in my mind). It is uncanny how the two of them rub off on each other and hold very identical admirable values on thrift, humility, leading through their exemplary lifestyle, their interest in fitness, strong family values, engaged and quiet community service etc.

What amazes me the most about the man was his Ying and Yang dualism . Mr B was extremely principled and disciplined yet he was most jovial and playful, could go on for hours on his role plays and endless twist just to entertain . He was great by any measure of intellect, professional success , wealth yet he never saw himself as better than anyone .

Mr B we will miss you terribly , you brought us so much laughter , kind words when needed , wise counsel frequently , yours was an exceptional life. Knowing you was one of my life greatest privileges .

I love you , sleep well my egbon of no compare .
Posted by Atedo Peterside on March 11, 2021
Dear Catherine,

Please accept the condolences of Dudun and I at this difficult time.

I took it for granted that Seyi would always be around as a colleague to turn to when seeking to bounce ideas off a highly respected person operating in an adjoining but distinctly distinguishable ecosystem.

If I am still shell-shocked by the news of Seyi's passing, then I can imagine the magnitude of adjustment that you need to make.

I am shocked because Seyi was always there and very consistent. His views were predictable on most issues because invariably they were "correct". I am proud of my friendship and association with Seyi and may be able to gather my thoughts and tell you more in due course about why I understood Seyi to be a gentle giant and a pillar of support for me and many others like me.

May the good Lord grant you and his other loved ones the fortitude to bear this irreparable loss.

May Seyi's gentle soul rest in perfect peace.
Posted by Kemi Okoya on March 11, 2021
Dear Sis Catherine, I am so so so very sorry for your loss.
I had the privilege of being mentored by Mr Bickersteth when he was on the board of Freedom Foundation and I was ED. Those experiences cannot be forgotten.
He was readily available to support my work, bring his endless experience to bear, patient, kind and present despite his busy schedule. The world has lost a great man and leader. May his precious soul Rest In Peace.

I am truly sorry. My prayers are with you, your daughters and the family.
My very best

Kemi Okoya
Posted by Temi Omotola on March 10, 2021
Your light shone and so many shined through it - your lit candle kept giving light to others. Anyone that met you could clearly see that you lead by example. That was not just some writings on the wall- you lived it.

Your name became a brand amongst the brightest and the best.

Thank you for your visionary & exemplary leadership both in your professional and personal life. You were a pacesetter to so many people and the testament of your good works lives on.

My sincere condolences to the family you left behind. Rest In Peace Seyi.
Posted by HARRY FOUCHE on March 10, 2021
Dear Catherine

Please accept my condolences on the passing of your dear husband Seyi.
I had a chance to meet both you and Seyi during my travels to Nigeria with my wife Veronica Egbor Fouche.
The last time we had a chance to exchange and converse was at a social gathering organized by my in-laws Danjuma and Yvonne Saleh
at their home in Lagos, as I was getting ready to return to the United States.
I enjoyed very much the interactions with him, you, and all who gathered that day. 
Seyi was a quiet man but full of wisdom.

Catherine, Amy, and Melody may you find comfort in the good times
you had, and in the cherished memories Seyi is leaving you.
May the beautiful memories he left us all
keep him for ever present in our hearts.
As the saying goes: Seyi was someone one should know,
may he Rest In Peace.

Blessings to you and the girls

Harry Fouche,
Chicago, Illinois USA
Posted by Simi Ajibodu on March 10, 2021
My Very Own Uncle Seyi

What can I say about my dearest Uncle Seyi?

As a young child, he stood as a strong tower right next to my father. I always had to stretch my neck upwards to look at him and wondered why all my father’s friends were tall.

I fondly remember visiting most weekends at Uncle Seyi’s and Aunty Catherine’s apartment in Ikoyi. The outdoor corridor lined with potted plants leading into a chorus of “Barney is a dinosaur” but Uncle Seyi never minded how loud the trio got (Myself, Yele & Melody) #girlpower #girldad.

Uncle Seyi always had a welcoming smile and gave me my now famous nickname ‘Simomo’. He reminds me so much of my father; quiet, thoughtful and always blossomed when around loving friends.

Fond memories of driving from Lagos to Accra, from Surulere to VGC, or even walking across the driveway, I could always count on having a happy and fun time when visiting my God-Family.

Years later, Uncle Seyi would be sitting beside his Simomo on the high table on my wedding day as the chairman together with Aunty Catherine, laughing and having a merry old time.

My most recent cherished memory of my Uncle Seyi would be sometime in 2019. I was travelling with my son, Tise who was 3years old, when we bumped into Uncle Seyi at Heathrow. We exchanged greetings and curious Tise asks, who is that, to which I reply - that is Grandpa’s friend and my Uncle. As we touched down in Lagos, we bumped into Uncle Seyi again & what does Tise do? He greets Uncle Seyi by shouting ‘hello Uncle Grandpa , I can never forget Uncle Seyi’s smile at the time.

I shall truly miss him and his quiet but loving ways. Rest in Peace Uncle Grandpa, we love you.

Simomo Idowu-Ajibodu
Posted by Adeyele Idowu on March 10, 2021
Our Tall Godfather.

You were just so tall, with the widest smile, so gentle and might I add incredibly good skin. I just always remember you, Aunty Cat and my dad always towering over us with my mum just slightly above (us kids). You all looked so tall, speaking Yoruba whilst teasing Aunty Cat with my dad and cracking jokes. This was always the ritual right before pick up or drop off from our frequent sleepovers with Melody.

I guess some of my earliest memories would be going to your mothers home after church, a quaint farm filled with goats and chickens. If memory serves me right, you sometimes tried to make Simi, Mel and I to pose with the goats and we’d always run away in fear.

You pretty much allowed us to do what we wanted when we were much younger, Aunty was the strict-Ish one (“take your Flinstone vitamins, no more cake it’s time for bed, no more TV girls we have church in the morning”). You’d wink at us for the ‘go’ signal for the last cake and when Aunty would walk into the kitchen we’d grab a last slice of cake and run off to bed. It’s so funny I remember how you’d even tilt your head to the left so we’d make a run for it before aunty got back.

Every time I landed in Lagos for the Christmas holidays, I’d always see you on your way to or from the gym or relaxing in your garden. You’d stand and wave “welcome back dear, I’m sure you’re ready to have some fun ehn, I’d laugh ... and he’d say not too much o” then he’d go back to his paper. Again, the same greeting on my way out of the country usually with him going to the gym and he’d say going back to England already? Good Christmas eh? Ok o, make us proud” ending with a quick hug always holding your shoulders.

The last time I saw you was October 2019. You saw my pregnant belly and was like “whatttt, what is this? Who did this to you, oh gosh where is that man??” ah I have to come back and carry baby o, I laughed and said yes o, Grandpa B by his grace”. Hmmm who knew?

I’m happy I knew you for a long as I did. A present and seemingly quiet person but put him around Uncle Danjuma and my Dad (Koye) who fondly called him My Papi and you’d see a whole different side.

Everyone speaks about how accomplished you are. I will always remember you as our very Tall Godfather - A gentle giant, a simple and humble man with a fun side.

I know you’re probably seated in a beautiful garden in heaven looking down...

I pray for your soul to rest in the most perfect peace.

Love always

Yele Idowu-Ezeli
Posted by Ike Chioke on March 10, 2021
He was a good man. Among the very best you can find among all of us. A juxtaposition of a deeply cerebral giant with yet a humble, empathetic mien left you feeling deeply connected every time you meet him. Rest in peace Seyi. We will miss you.

Yvonne & Ike Chioke
Posted by Setonji Osho on March 10, 2021
What Can I say about my Uncle Seyi ...

My Uncle Seyi, was Swift on the Squash Court  A Kind Guide and Father figure to me whenever we met or I visited Nigeria!

My Uncle Seyi, ... an energy and vitality that lagged behind his age!

He was taken far too soon! Loved by His Family and Friends he.. will be Greatly Missed!

My Thoughts and Prayers are with Aunty Cathrine and the Girls!

Love x

https://share.descript.com/view/S6LpMNYr2ZX





Posted by Ayodele Egwaikhide on March 10, 2021
The first time I met you was when I joined KPMG. I admired your exemplary visionary leadership style not just in KPMG, but in every facet of your life. You made a positive impression and impact everywhere you went.
Few years down the line I got married to your Nephew and I had to refer to you as Uncle Seyi. Uncle Seyi, the news of your passing is still so surreal to me considering we still saw you few days to your passing. 
We have truly lost a GEM.
We have lost an ICON.
We all miss you. REST IN PEACE UNCLE SEYI

Ayodele Egwaikhide
Posted by Yomi Sanni on March 10, 2021
Tribute to Oluseyi Togonu-Bickersteth (OTB) – A Marvellous Boss and Friend:

My great boss, mentor, big brother, friend and confidant. Gone too soon. He looked very healthy and strong to me. I do not really know of any person that could be more careful, in terms of diet, lifestyle and health issues. Yet death chose to take him away, a few months to his seventieth (70th) birthday.

I took a liking to Seyi, when I met him in Arthur Andersen in 1981. I found him nice, easy-going, friendly, reliable and accessible. He was the only senior person that I did not have any opportunity to work directly with, in my first stint in the firm, from 1981 and 1989; yet, he was the one I liked most and was closest to. I remained very close to him, even during my seven-year ‘sabbatical’ from the firm, as a banker.

I was a frequent guest at his residences, right from the early days (1981), in his first place of abode, in a then remote street in Bariga (opposite CMS Grammar School), called ‘Counsel Obele’, Ilupeju, Onikan, Ikoyi, VGC and again Ikoyi, in that order. We used to play chess and watch films together, in the eighties (1980s), in his Bariga and Ilupeju residences. In the nineties (1990s), we sponsored chess competitions, played squash and swam together at the Ikoyi Club 1938.


He went out of his way to bring me back to the firm, under his wing, in 1996. From then, I worked closely with him as a subordinate and later as a junior Partner in the Tax Practice in Andersen/KPMG. When I became the head of the Tax Practice in 2002 and later the firm’s first Chief Operating Officer (COO) in 2008, he remained my boss and I reported to him as the Managing (Senior National) Partner. As the COO, I worked more closely with him in general management, as his right-hand man, until both of us retired on the same date (30 September, 2016). We remained very close until his death and regularly compared notes on our exhilarating retirement experiences.

The twenty (20) years (1996 – 2016) we spent working directly together, in Andersen/KPMG, was the best period of my entire career. Seyi contributed immensely to my success in life.

He will be sorely missed. May God forgive his shortcomings, grant him eternal rest and guide and protect Amy, Melody, Catherine and the rest of us. Sleep well OTB.

Yomi Sanni

Posted by Seun Babalola on March 10, 2021
Seyi will be fondly remembered for many beautiful things. A gentle giant. An inspiration. An encourager. A perfect gentleman, who lived an accomplished life. A brilliant mind who led a great organisation. I will surely miss you as will so many other people. Rest in perfect peace. Hero.
Posted by Yetunde Adeniyi-Pitan on March 10, 2021
Uncle Seyi, I am struggling with this tribute, losing mom and now losing you in the space of two weeks. it feels like I lost my mom and dad.
  You always loved and looked out for mom, my siblings and I. Thank you for the constant support and always reminding us that education is key. You impacted our lives immensely. Say hi to mom and grandma sisi. Rest in peace.
Posted by Goodluck Obi on March 10, 2021
It is with heavy heart that I write this. Never knew it will be this soon. Words actually fail me to describe Lord Seyi. Seyi was a mentor and role model to all of us at Andersen & KPMG. Personally influenced and impacted me in a great way, directly and indirectly. So many things that we learnt from you. A core professional, very principled, smart and a go getter. An examplary leader who built and believed in his people. There’s nothing you didn’t know or took note of.
We will miss you sorely and the vacuum you’ve created will be too difficult to fill. You have tremendous legacies, I just pray those will linger. You were a great man.
May the Lord grant you eternal rest and comfort the family and all of us that you’ve left behind. Rest on great mentor till we meet again.
Posted by Tope Osho on March 10, 2021
Uncle Seyi is an example of a life well lived. He was a kind, strong soul. It always felt good to be around him and he was loved and respected by all of us.

He will be greatly missed, but all our lives are better for having known him and he will live on in our hearts.
Posted by Adeniyi Pitan on March 10, 2021

Uncle Seyi.....it saddens me to speak or write about you in the past. I remember when I had the first meet /dinner(supposed to be drilling) with aunty Catherine and yourself at your lovely residence in VGC as the intending husband to be, to your niece. Little did I know that you will hugely inspire my life, work and perspective in general. Your achievement, your personality and your background leaves a remarkable story to tell. You are an epitome of success. A true Nigerian story.
I appreciate our chats, texts and you always returning my calls.

A true family man
A loving husband to learn from
A true father to his girls (ladies)
A true brother to his sisters
A true uncle to his nephews and nieces

and surely a charming gentleman to know.

God bless the family that you left behind.

Your memories and impact in the lives of many will linger forever. You will never be forgotten.

Rest in peace good sir.




Posted by Omowunmi Ladenegan on March 10, 2021
You were indeed an exemplary and admirable leader. May the Lord give comfort and fill the void created by your absence. 
Rest in the bosom of the Almighty. Amen.
Posted by Deji Ishmael on March 10, 2021
Mr B was a true gentleman. He always had a smile every time we met, he was like an egbon (big brother) and definitely wise and always willing to offer counsel when asked. This is one of those times when I can only say that God knows best. Rest in peace Mr B.
Posted by Hadizat ImamOkorejior on March 10, 2021
It is with a heavy heart that I write this. I always admired you as you were kind, always had a smile that said everything would be alright. I always looked forward to the Alumni meetings because I knew you would be there. You were a great inspiration to a lot of us. I remember vividly one of these gathering where you told us about how you met your wife. I am so happy you had a full life with her and lots of good family memories. We love you but the Lord loves you more. May your gentle soul rest in peace.
Posted by Adeboye AKINSOLA on March 9, 2021
As a treasury Treasury Accountant, I packed some dollar bills for you on one of your trips. On your return you complianed the bills were short. How that happened I cannot explain till tomorrow.However, you did not flog the issue and it died a natural death.
I can only imagine if it were some other leaders, all hell would have been let loose.
You were an epitome of exemplary leadership and a paragon of greatness.
You will be greatly missed. I covet eternal rest for your gentle soul.

Posted by OlaTokunbo Ishmael on March 9, 2021
Mr B, there were many dimensions where I looked up to you. I hung on to your every word of advice for business, friendships, fitness and love. With humility you advised on business trends and boardroom dynamics. Your acts demonstrated how you valued and loved your family, especially our big sis, your loving wife, Mrs B. Your fitness and strength were evident. On the occasions when I walked and worked out with you, I marvelled. Needless to say, whatever you did, you did with gusto. You were a prime example for personal, business, relationship and retirement goals. It’s hard to believe we won’t see that infectious grin again. You lived a good life and leave a great legacy. Your family has lost a wonderful husband, father and brother. We have lost a friend, brother and mentor. Africa has lost a Titan. Rest in Peace Mr B.
Posted by Olufisayo Alo on March 9, 2021
For the years you Chaired GGA Nigeria, we learnt not a few things from your quality leadership, you mentored and led without interference. May the good Lord comfort your immediate family and the uncountable ones left behind. Rest in peace. Fisayo, GGA Nigeria.
Posted by Roselyn Onalaja on March 9, 2021
Seyi, your passing was a rude shock I'm still trying to wrap my head around. Since the news broke, I've continued to reminisce on the person you were; friendly, funny, easy-going and generally taking life easy.

You will be sorely missed. May God grant us all (particularly your family) the fortitude to bear this loss and grant your soul eternal rest. Amen.
Posted by Oluwatoyin Egwaikhide on March 9, 2021
Tribute to my brother  Egbon
Words cannot describe the shock of the news of your passing, still in shock and hope someone will wake me up from a bad dream .
I cannot express the pain we all feel right now
You are our big brother and always will be till we all meet again in eternity with Jesus.
You lead by example you were always humble ,kind and you touch many people lives
You were always there for everyone ,a father figure to all your nephews and nieces
You were a wonderful husband ,father and uncle.
You make sure you give everyone the attention they deserve
You never fail to call or text me just the check on me ,ah you are a brother in a million and you will live in our hearts for ever,
We all grew up together in the same house hold
You me kehinde Taiwo, Jide, shola ,yemi and segun .I still cannot find the right words to describe my thoughts but you will for ever be missed  and loved, But never forgotten, may your dear gentle soul rest in perfect peace amen.

We will celebrate your live and not mourn
Those were the advice you gave me a few days ago about your sister
So we will celebrate your life  .sleep well in the Lord . Thank God for a blessing of a brother who as been a blessing to many .

Linda Johnson osho
Posted by Rosemary Ngoesionwu on March 9, 2021
Seyi will be truly missed by all. He was such a wonderful person, down to earth and a Charismatic leader.
May his gentle soul rest in peace, Amen.
Posted by Lucky Sada on March 9, 2021
Boss, u will forever be missed.

Words are not enough to speak of your greatness. You have left an indelible mark, not only in the business world, but also in the minds of multitude to whom you provided leadership and guidance. You are indeed an enigma.

Rest in peace.
Posted by Temitope Ogbeide on March 9, 2021
Dear Uncle Seyi, little did I know that God was to call your name on Wednesday the 3rd of March as the next in line. I didn't think I was going to write a tribute about you so soon after writing my mum's a couple of weeks ago.
When I close my eyes to think of you, I think of your big smile just like grandma Sisi's that could topple buildings.
I think of you; full of life and laughter that could move mountains. I think of your generosity. A solid pillar of support you were to my mum, siblings and I.
I think of your numerous advice. "Nothing comes easy in life. You have to study hard" you always said that.
You taught me through your life on earth, that the attainment of one's goal in life is not predicted on his or her background, but on hard work, perseverance and dedication.
Words really would not be able to describe how I feel, but I consider myself blessed to come into this life as your niece.
Until we meet again, keep resting on the wings of heavenly doves.
Temitope Ogbeide.
Posted by Kamar Bakrin on March 9, 2021
One day, we had a meeting with a potential client, Seyi and I. It was my first such meeting. We headed out of the office and Seyi casually hailed a taxi instead of us riding in his car. On the way to the meeting we gisted like close pals - me, a 2nd year associate and he a very senior partner. In between the banter, he very quickly laid out dynamics and likely outcome of the meeting. Of course it turned out he was spot on. Such was person of OTB, super chilled, very amiable, yet extremely quick in getting to what really mattered in any situation.

Decades after I left Andersen, our standard greeting everytime we met was "Seyi, it's not fair that you look younger than me" "Kamar, Kamar, it's because you are making too much money" He would then break out in that trademark infectious grin of his. For our generation, Seyi personified what we wanted to be: cool, hip, yet with a reputation as an outstanding professional.

I will miss him...
Posted by Elisabeth Uwagba on March 9, 2021
Seyi,
How can I begin to convey in words the total shock, devastation, denial, disbelief on hearing of your passing away.
As I am writing this tribute my family and I are still struggling to accept this sad and bitter reality.
So many dreams for this next stage of our lives, where we pictured ourselves on long walks and lazy afternoons.
So much hope for the future for a peaceful retirement after so many years of hard work, snatched too soon.
My daughters keep on asking if I am sure about this sad news.
We watched our children grow from baby hood to adulthood. Moving in and out of each other’s houses .We shared joys and worries from nurseries to universities.
We fondly remember our simple Sunday afternoons at the beach or our yearly Easter trip to Cotonou.
Seyi, you were the first person my daughters saw as an uncle before they even knew the meaning of that word. You could relate to the old and even more so with the young. I remember you rolling on the carpet with them laughing and making funny faces.
Your incredibly good sense of humour, infectious love and cheerful laughter always made all around you feel comfortable. You were the shining light when you entered a room ,assured and confident.
You were a thorough professional who touched the lives of those who were lucky to work with you.
We shall for ever be grateful for your emotional support and your act of selflessness whereby you got home late one night after a long day at work but felt obliged to go back to the office to make a phone call that changed the course of our lives for ever. 
Beloved Catherine, you have always been a pillar for me to lean on and in your hour of need God will be by your side and envelope you in his tender love and care and you will never walk alone.
Melody & Amy, we pray to God to comfort you for the loss of a loving father and ask him to strengthen you.
The three words from your dad to you were: LOVE, PEACE & HAPPINESS.
I know he will be watching over you and shower you with those exact words wherever you may be.
Seyi, we thank God to have put you on our path and in our lives. So many memories....
We love you loads but God loves you best.
May your gentle soul rests in perfect peace
Tawa
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Leave a Tribute

 
Recent Tributes
Posted by Olumuyiwa Olusanya on March 27, 2021
Mr B- a perfect gentleman with strong family values and a great business leader.I pray the Lord comforts you Mrs B and the girls.

May your gentle soul rest in His perfect peace Mr.B.
Posted by Melinda Lamb on March 26, 2021
I’ll never forget how very kind Seyi was to me, when I was going through a bad patch in my life. A compassionate man, I’m grateful to have known him.
Posted by Victor Onyenkpa on March 20, 2021
Seyi had the memory of an elephant. Yes, he did! I doubt he ever forgot someone
he met, no matter how briefly. I certainly know he didn’t forget whatever you said to him!
I remember when OBJ assumed office as civilian President in 1999 and had made a dear friend, Solomon Giwa-Amu (may his soul rest in peace) his ADC. I had casually mentioned this to Seyi in the course of a conversation and promptly forgotten it. You can therefore imagine my surprise when Seyi told me about a year later that...

https://guardian.ng/saturday-magazine/transition/the-seyi-i-knew/
his Life

Biography

MR OLUSEYI PESU TOGONU-BICKERSTETH
MY HUSBAND, OLUSEYI TOGONU-BICKERSTETH WAS BORN ON MONDAY 13 AUGUST 1951 IN LAGOS NIGERIA.

HE ATTENDED CMS GRAMMAR SCHOOL AND UNIVERSITY OF IBADAN(‘72).

SEYI WENT ON TO OBTAIN AN MA FROM YORK UNIVERSITY IN TORONTO(‘76).

AFTER COMPLETING HIS ICAN QUALIFICATIONS (‘82) IN RECORD TIME, SEYI WAS ADMITTED TO THE INSTITUTE OF CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS.  IN DUE COURSE HE BECAME A FELLOW.  AS TAX BECAME HIS SPECIALITY, SEYI ALSO BECAME A FELLOW OF THE INSTITUTE OF TAXATION OF NIGERIA.

SEYI ATTENDED NUMEROUS PROFESSIONAL COURSES IN HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL, CHICAGO BOOTH ET AL.  

IN 1978, HIS COMPETITIVE SPIRIT LED SEYI TO BECOME A FOUNDING MEMBER (009) OF ARTHUR ANDERSEN. HE MADE PARTNER IN 1990 AND WAS MANAGING PARTNER 1999-2002.  AS A RESULT OF THE ENRON SCANDAL IN 2002, ENIGMATIC SEYI CONTRIBUTED TO THE SMOOTH METAMORPHOSIS OF ARTHUR ANDERSEN TO KPMG NIGERIA.  SEYI WAS THE MANAGING PARTNER OF KPMG NIGERIA 2002 -2016.  DURING HIS TENURES AT BOTH ARTHUR ANDERSEN AND KPMG SEYI ENSURED THAT THE FIRMS CONSISTENTLY UPHELD THE HIGH MORAL VALUES WHICH HAD BEEN INSTILLED IN HIM.  HE ALSO DELIBERATELY BRED OTHER PARTNERS AS HE RECOGNISED THAT PEOPLE WITH ASPIRATIONS ARE PRICELESS.  HE SPURRED THEM ON WITH HIS MOTTOS: 

‘THERE ARE TWO TYPE OF PEOPLE IN THE WORLD: THE QUICK OR THE DEAD!’

‘ONLY THE PARANOID SURVIVE!’

‘SPEED KILLS THE ENEMY!’

IN 2015 SEYI WAS MADE THE CHAIRMAN OF KPMG AFRICA  AND WAS THE FIRST AFRICAN TO BE APPOINTED TO THE GLOBAL KPMG BOARD.  HE RETIRED AS MANAGING PARTNER OF KPMG NIGERIA IN 2016 AND FROM THE GLOBAL BOARD IN 2017.

SEYI ALWAYS SAID THAT HE WAS BLESSED TO GET PAID FOR A CAREER HE LOVED! HE LOVED THE INTELLECTUAL BRAINSTORMING AND SPARRING WITH VARIOUS STAKEHOLDERS BUT MOST OF ALL HE WAS PROUD TO LEAD A TRIBE OF THE BEST INTELLECTUALS IN THE MARKET PLACE! 

POST CAREER, SEYI SERVED ON SEVERAL BOARDS INCLUDING LEADWAY, GOOD GOVERNANCE AFRICA, LEAP AFRICA AND NIGERIAN BOTTLING COMPANY.

AWAY FROM HIS CAREER SEYI LED A SIMPLE LIFE.  HE LOVED EXERCISE: WEIGHT TRAINING, CYCLING, WALKING AND SWIMMING.  NATURE WAS HIS HAPPY PLACE. HE LOVED HIS GARDEN IN VGC AND HIS BACKYARD AT ILABERE.  HE MADE TIME TO STOP AND SMELL THE ROSES!

SEYI AND I GOT MARRIED IN 1984 AND WERE BLESSED WITH MELODY OLUSEYI (‘90) AND AMY TOYIN (‘94).  HE WAS A WONDERFUL HUSBAND AND FATHER WHO CARED FOR US DEEPLY. 

SEYI LIVED A FULFILLED LIFE AND LEFT LARGE FOOTPRINTS WHERE EVER HE WENT. 

ONLY GOD CAN AND WILL FILL HIS VOID.
Recent stories

In memory of "Lord Seyi"

Shared by PATRICK IYAMABO on March 16, 2021
"Lord Seyi”, may the almighty God who gave you the opportunity to demonstrate his majesty here on earth, forever have you seated with him, in the world after.

You have made your mark. You have demonstrated uncommon leadership. You have been invaluable in shaping the lives of so many people and leaders. In the process, you have given this nation an excellent shot at success, despite the odds.

You will be sorely missed, but in a wonderful way, you will also be fondly remembered. The many encounters in the firm, my numerous viewpoints you gladly debated (not minding that you were the Country Managing Partner), the advice you shared at various times and the guidance you freely offered all the way, are all lovingly etched in my memory. You will forever be remembered.

Adios “Lord Seyi” (as we fondly referred to him). May your Soul Rest in Peace - Amen.

A chance meeting....never to be forgotten

Shared by Michael O on March 16, 2021
We met by pure chance, one never to be forgotten....I had a 3 month old baby in one arm,  a pushchair with baby shopping in the seat in the other on a London street, us boarding a bus. The driver says no change and was asking me to get off. You and Catherine appeared behind me. You took the pushchair and wheeled it in, Catherine asked to take the baby and said I could pay using my debit card (which was not widely known then)...and so I did. A simple, yet powerful gesture from a humble and quintesential couple. That was how we got introduced, the rest is history. A gesture never forgotten and never to be. May your gentle and humble soul rest in perfect peace. May the Lord give Catherine and your daughters the fortitude to bear your passing to the glory of the Lord. Rest in Peace sir

A tribute to Oluseyi Togonu Bickersteth

Shared by Joe Uwagba on March 11, 2021
It is with a very heavy heart and profound sadness that I write this tribute to a close family friend, a colleague and a gentleman in the person of Oluseyi whom I have known for over forty years.

I first met Seyi in Lagos at Arthur Andersen & Co. He had joined the firm a little over nine months before I joined in July 1979. Throughout the time I served at AA & Co before moving on in January 1989, I was in regular and constant touch with him as we both worked on many audit assignments before he moved on to the tax division. In fact, Seyi is the only person I know who worked in all three divisions (audit, consulting & tax) of the firm. This is itself a testimony to his cerebral prowess, an aptitude for learning new tricks of a trade and an incredible ability to adjust and adapt to new circumstances. Little wonder he was able to deliver first class and unblemished professional service to all his clients.Undoubtedly, these qualities saw him rise to the very pinnacle of his calling. Although it is a very long time ago now, there is no forgetting the fond and cherished memories of some of the assignments and engagements on which we both worked. Space, not time, limits me to just three of them.

As freshmen in accounting and audits, we were severely challenged when we worked at TOPCON, the exploratory arm of Texaco in Nigeria. The accounting terminologies were far from the routine exposures during the rigorous training sessions we had had. The technicalities of oil & gas accounting were, to say the least, exasperating. Even though we did not want the client staff to perceive our ignorance, most of us on this assignment were often moody as we had to wade through a confusing maze of accounting jargon and an unwieldy system. However, as daunting as the task was, Seyi managed to have a smile on his face all the time. He was not unduly fazed by the very long hours we had to put in. Indeed, Seyi got on with the client’s staff so well that they all felt at ease with him whenever he came asking questions and probing with the typical forensic disposition of auditors.

Then, there was the time we were shipped off to the Detroit office with two other colleagues for basic training in the firm’s Management Information Consulting techniques & methodologies. We found ourselves in the deep end of a pool – learning how to code in some obscure computer language in order to work on a major new assignment for the firm in Lagos. All four of us were often in a state of quandary. We had to do this coding stuff which was basically writing in dots and strokes. Whilst we were trying to find our feet, Seyi quickly grasped the nettle and within a relatively short time, he too started to speak using weird symbols, dots and strokes. He even had some time to spare for watching his favourite sports: football (not soccer!) and basketball. Sadly, we were not able to put our newly acquired skills into use. By the time we returned to Lagos, the contract for the project in question had been “pulled”. Much to our collective relief, we were re-transferred to the audit division.

Seyi and I worked on many other assignments and projects in Lagos, Warri, Kaduna, Maiduguri, Port-Harcourt, Abidjan and Dakar. But the most exciting and thoroughly exhilarating assignment we both enjoyed was a yearly one week stint auditing the accounts of a client at Mkar, some five miles north of Gboko in Benue state. We were the only ones in the office who ‘volunteered’ to go to this outpost, the local branch of a Utah based missionary organisation.It was a hardship location in every sense. The assignment was more of an endurance test than a professional challenge. We would travel to Makurdi by air, then to Gboko by taxi and thereafter to Mkar by mini trucks. Upon arrival at Mkar, our first task was to go to the local village market to do some food shopping for the week. We were responsible for preparing our meals throughout our stay. Our bedrooms were not the safest abodes as we were constantly advised to be on the lookout for deadly poisonous snakes that may crawl in at night, creep through the bed sheets and inflict their deadly bites. I recall Seyi aways joked that at Mkar, one must be able to sleep with one eye open.

The books of account at Mkar were more of a challenge to our linguistic abilities than our accounting / audit skills. The trial balance was partially in Tiv language. This had to be fully translated into English and properly coded before we could proceed to the tasks at hand. We tried to not ruffle our clients by asking too many questions. The staff was very polite and quite helpful. As always, Seyi was very fond of them – joking, back slapping, teasing and even playing pranks. By the end of the week, it was obvious that his vocabulary of the Tiv language had been enhanced. For many years after and as recently as a few weeks ago, Seyi and I started our conversations in customary Tiv greetings.

The news of Seyi’s sudden death is one of the toughest and shocking matters that I have had to grapple with in all of my life. I just could not process it.Coming so soon after the burial of his sister, Kehinde, I found myself asking and wondering if this was a morbid or cruel joke. Alas, it is true. So I am tempted to join in the mournful wailing and shedding of tears. But I do not want to do that. Rather, I want to dwell on the notion that it is not how long we live that matters. It is how well. Seyi lived a full, happy and fulfilled life in ALL its ramifications. With Seyi around, there was always laughter and fun.Wherever he was, Seyi uplifted the mood in his own special way. He was a thoroughly compassionate, caring, kind-hearted and loving individual and family man. There was nothing that could stand in the way of him being in touch with the three girls in his life – Catherine, Melody and Amy. Our daughters have mournfully remarked that Uncle Seyi was the first person they knew as an uncle – well before growing up to know the real meaning of that word.

Seyi was not one to burden others with his problems. He was not one to allude to innocuous and nebulous “ethical standards” in a way that was pretentious or even hypocritical. He strived to live what he preached – Peace, Love and Happiness. Even the way of his departure was without any fuss: quietly and peacefully; in his sleep.



A certified Life Coach, Rob Liano tells us: “the sorrow we feel when we lose a loved one is the price to have had them in our lives”. My thoughts are with you, my dearest friend. Your memories linger. Your smile that cared; your listening ear, your goodness shared. My wish is your restful eternal peace.

Adieu my good friend, Oluseyi.