First Bank of Nigeria Limited on Friday embraced the board changes effected by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), just as the financial institution disclosed that Dr. Adesola Adeduntan has resumed as Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer.
The bank disclosed this in a statement signed by its Group Head, Marketing and Corporate Communications, Folake Ani-Mumuney.
It also reassured depositors and shareholders of the safety of their funds and investment.
It explained: “Dr. Adesola Adeduntan has since resumed work as CEO in line with the directives of the CBN. We can confirm that the bank is cooperating with the CBN and other regulators while the operations of the bank are not hampered or hindered in any way and are in fact running smoothly.
“We further wish to reassure the public, our esteemed customers and stakeholders in the words of the Governor of the CBN in concluding his press conference, ‘The CBN hereby reassures the depositors, creditors and other stakeholders of the bank of its commitment to ensuring the stability of the financial system. There is therefore no cause for panic amongst the banking public, given that the actions being taken are meant to strengthen the bank and position it as a banking industry giant.’
The CBN had on Thursday removed all directors of First Bank Nigeria Limited and those of its parent company, FBN Holdings Plc to stave off a boardroom crisis that led to the short-lived retirement of Adeduntan, on Wednesday. However, the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, had announced the reinstatement of the bank CEO.
He also announced the appointment of a former Minister of State for Finance and former Executive Director of First Bank, Mr. Remi Babalola, as chairman of FBN Holdings. He took over from Mr. Oba Otudeko who was sacked by the banking sector regulator. Other new directors on the FBN Holdings’ board are Fatade Oluwole, Kofo Dosekun, Remi Lasaki, Alimi Abdulrasaq, Ahmed Modibbo, Khalifa Imam and Peter Aliogo.
Mr. UK Eke retained his position as Managing Director of FBN Holdings.
First Bank Nigeria Limited’s new Chairman is Tunde Hassan-Odukale, who replaced Mrs. Ibukun Awosika.
Other board members are Tokunbo Martins, Uche Nwokedi, Adekunle Sonola, Isioma Ogodazi, Ebenezer Olufowose, Ishaya Elijah B. Dodo and Adeduntan.
Gbenga Shobo, deputy managing director; and Remi Oni and Abdullahi Ibrahim, executive directors, are members of the reconstituted board.
Emefiele told journalists that with the changes, the bank must assume its leadership position in the industry, adding that the central bank will be looking into allegations of insider abuse in the bank and will ensure that corporate governance is restored.
According to him, the CBN will insist on proper re-capitalisation of the bank to restore its capital adequacy ratio.
He stated that the CBN took the action because it considered itself a stakeholder in management changes involving First Bank due to the forbearance and its close monitoring of the bank over the last five years.