Former Chairman, Board of Directors of First Bank of Nigeria Limited, Ibukun Awosika, said she had great plans and aspiration for the bank before her sacking on Thursday by the Central Bank of Nigeria. She also said First Bank was able to deliver value to customers and stakeholders under her leadership. Awosika made this known in a statement on Friday posted on her Instagram handle titled, ‘My FBN Group Journey’.
The PUNCH had earlier reported that the apex bank removed Awosika and all the board members of the bank on Thursday “to protect 31 million customers, minority shareholders of First Bank of Nigeria Ltd”.
The CBN also announced the immediate appointment of Tunde Hassan-Odukale as Chairman of First Bank. Before his appointment, Hassan-Odukale was the Managing Director of Leadway Assurance Company.
The re-organisation of First Bank by the regulator was not unconnected to the removal of Adesola Adeduntan as the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the bank and the appointment of Gbenga Shobo as MD/CEO designate without regulatory approval. CBN had earlier queried the Board of the bank over the development.
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Reacting in a statement on Friday night, Awosika chronicled her journey with the board of First Bank which she said started in October 2010.
At various times, she was the chairman of the board of FBN Life Insurance Ltd, FBN Capital, FBN quest Merchant Bank Group, which she chaired until her appointment as Chairman of First Bank of Nigeria on January 1 2016.
She stated, “For over five years , I have worked with a dedicated team of board and management , with the support of Central Bank of Nigeria to rebuild and restructure the institution for its future. This included cleaning up non performing loans, establishing good operational governance systems and processes, building controls and an effective and robust risk management system.
“I am confident we have brought First Bank of Nigeria to a place where it is more than able to deliver utmost value to its stakeholders and the nation at large.
“As a board, we acted in what we clearly believed to be in the best interest of the bank and we had great plans and aspirations for where the bank could go to in its future, building on all the work that has already been done in the last five plus years. “Without a shadow of doubt, I will unequivocally state that I have always acted in honor and integrity with the utmost interest of the institution, all our stakeholders and the Nation.”