Africa’s richest man who is also a Nigerian has recounted withdrawing $10m (£7.6m) just to look at it and prove to himself he was rich.

Aliko Dangote, the owner of Dangote Group, told the story at a forum in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, on Saturday.

“When you first start a business your target is to make your first million,” the Nigerian businessman said.

“But after a year or so, I realised that I had much more than $12-13bn (£9.2-10bn), and I said okay, fine, all these numbers are just written numbers.

“One day I went to a bank, at that time there were no restrictions, and I wrote a cheque and cashed $10m. And I took it home for myself. And I put it in the boot of my vehicle and I went home and I opened it and I looked at $10m and I said: ‘Okay fine, now I believe I have money.’”

“I took it back to the bank the next day,” Mr Dangote added.

Asked how much money he had in his wallet, he said: “Not even a dollar. Nothing.”

The Nigerian reached the rank of 23rd richest person in the world in 2014, according to Forbes magazine.

The magazine also named him as the Forbes Africa Person of the Year in the same year.

He had an estimated net worth of $10.6bn (£8.1bn) as of March 2019.