Tersoo ‘Terry’ Waya is a 55-years-old Nigerian Business man and a social popular personality. He hails from Vandeikya Local Government area of Benue State Nigeria. Fondly reffered to as Mr. Versace, Terry is a socialite known for his flair for expensive and luxury lifesyle and his love for the international brand, Versace. And, don’t get it twisted, Terry Waya is the father of one of the housemates of the mega Nigerian Reality TV Show, Big Brother Naija, who goes by the name of Kiddwaya.
When you tell tales of some of the richest men in around in Nigeria in the past decade or more, the name of this business mogul will sure make the list. Being one that is friends with some of the top political and business savvy’s such as, Chief Dele Momodu ( Journalist/Publisher, Businessman, and motivational speaker, also the CEO of Ovation International), Senator Dino Melaye (Former Senator representing Kogi East), Chief Femi Otedola (CEO Forte Oil), and the rest; Terry has also been in the news for both the good and not the choicest of reasons.
His fame gained popularity after he threw a fun fair bash in United Kingdom to celebrate his 40th birthday with over then 10 Nigerian governors in attendance in 2001. That birthday gig, for so long, remained a point of reference to other high octane parties held around town. He has had viral videos on social media with clips showing him in various areas of a luxury hotel room in a European city, most of which attracted negative criticism from fans around the world; especially people from Benue State. In his state, he is regarded as a homeless man, the reason being that during his father’s burial in his village, he brought a company that mounted a conducive temporary home for him and his visitors which was immediately dismantled and taken away after the burial. Merely looking at his son, Kiddwaya on the reality show, one would assume he is nothing but a spoiled rich kid; but when you take your time to watch him out, you realize how truly humble and a great person he is. I bet his father isn’t different. I feel he is judged by the society because of luxurious lifestyle (a life I feel he deserves after putting in the work) and his clique of rich friends.
Some controversy still surrounds the source of wealth of this flamboyant businessman.
However, it is gnerally believed that he acted as a front for various military officers in the Abacha regime. He is described by many, as the “chronic crony” of the military.
Terry Waya, being friend to some of the elite political leaders of the nation, he offered 500,000 pounds back in the day, to bail out a former Governor of the oil rich Bayelsa State, Late Diepreye Alamieyesiegha, when the governor was dained in london. That was what led the billionaire big into he net of the British police.
In 2005, the Metropolitan Police of London, arrested the businessman mogul from his North London home on charges of money laundering enqiury. You may recall that the London based businessman played a big role in the bail process of fugitive Governor of Bayelsa State, DSP Alamieyeseigha Terry Waya was reported to have deposited about five hundred thousand pounds to secure bail for the Bayelsa Governor who later escaped to Nigeria earlier in the week. Alamieyeseigha was arrested on September 15, 2005 at Heathrow Airport, London, on his way from Germany where he had gone for medical attention and was charged money laundeing having been found with 1.8 million pounds in cash.
Terry was granted bail and asked to report to the London Police sometime in June 2006. The Scotland Yard press department confirmed Waya’s arrest to Elendureports.com. According to Terry Waya, the British Police accepted his offer to stand surety for the governor after finding him blameless in business and personal conducts.
Terry caused another controversy after posting bail for the Bayelsa Governor as he took full-page adverts in some Nigerian newspapers to ednounce those he described as ‘enemies of light.’ His excoriating adverts were seen as a direct attack on then President Olusegun Obasanjo and his government. He was a known enemy of the Obasanjo administration. In the advertisement, he accused President Olusegun Obasanjo of masterminding the Bayelsa governor’s arrest.Also on the 11th of September, 2006, Waya was charged with two counts of obtaining money transfers by decption. on October 7, 2007, he was found guilty of obtaining money transfers by deception in relation to a mortgage of $465,000 with whihc he bought his London property. He was found to have given false information in his application about his status, current employment, date of birth and other details.
Waya was found not guilty on the second count. This count had to do with re-mortgage Waya took out for $838,000 with Birmingham Midshires Bank.On August 7, 2007 The Southwark Crown Cout sentenced him to 80 hours community service to be completed with 12 months. He was also ordered to pay 1.5 million pounds, considered to be the benefit of his criminal activities and estimated to represent the current value of his London property. He was ordered to pay the above mentioned amount within six months or face 30 months imprisonment.
Those were the trying times of the business mogul, but I believe, he has been able to withstand them all. And whatever it was, whether he was guilty of any of the charges above, I pray he has, or should learn to be a better person for the good of his dear nation, Nigeria; and or continue with being a good citizen wherever he goes to.