Home Forums Beautiful Places/cities/arena in Africa EVER VISITED DERIBE PALACE; THE GOLDEN HOUSE IN BORNO?

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    Kasim Bilkisu


      Alhaji Ahmed Mai Deribe was born in 1924 in Borno State. Born into the Mai Deribe family in 1924 and died in 2002 in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. He was a long-distance entrepreneur in colonial Borno. He was a shrewd businessman and one of the richest men in Nigeria. The residential building of the late Alhaji Ahmed Mai Deribe, commonly called Deribe Palace built in the 1980s out of pure liquid gold, the house was owned by the late Alhaji Ahmed Mai Deribe,  a citizen of Borno State and a famous millionaire. The mansion was so elaborate that it was commissioned by the then military president, General Ibrahim Babangida who was also hosted at the gold building.


      The building’s front door was bulletproof and it took 10 years of continuous daily labor to build the house. In addition, the late rich man spent 100 million dollars on the building and 5 million yen per month on cleaning fees. The furniture and dishes in the house were produced by an Italian company called “Giovanni Monzio Companoni”.


      Mai Deribe (palace) House was considered one of the most expensive, luxurious, most decorated, and designed homes in Africa at the time of its construction, and has been voted one of the 20 most decorated places in the world.  This beautiful mansion has attracted many VIPs and dignitaries from around the world.


      Many celebrities from Africa and other continents have stayed in this magnificent palace, including Princess Diana and her husband, Prince Charles, King Juan Carlos I of Spain, who stayed at the palace for two days in 1986 (the King of Spain is said to have marveled at such wealth in the middle of an endless desert) and even a US President (George Bush himself who later became  US President), they were all housed in a golden marble building, which was so beautiful that the military president, General Ibrahim Babangida, carried out a test run, and another high-ranking guest was retired Army General Muhammad Saad Abubakar and former Prime Minister of Canada.


      There are several apartments in the building, including five interesting units that housed his four wives and his mother. One of his sons, Talba Ahmed Deribe, a lawyer by profession, said the gold building has the longest corridor in all of West Africa.


      When Ovation magazine published an article about the man and his wealth in the early 2000s, many Nigerians were awestruck by the grandeur of Deribe Palace.

      It is true that the late Deribe was very rich. It was something he did to impress others with his lavish wealth. Many other Nigerians remember him more because of his wealth. In the 1980s, he was one of the few people on the planet to fly the newly launched Gulfstream G550 private jet.


      Mai Deribe is known and still respected by the people of Borno for his lifelong philanthropy. He donated money to various causes. He lived in the house for 12 years before his death he survived wives and 27 children, May his soul rest in peace.


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