The governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, in the early evening of Thursday, April 29, announced the reinstatement of Dr. Sola Adeduntan as the Managing Director (MD) of the interim Board of First Bank of Nigeria and the sack of the entire members of the board of First Bank Holding and First Bank Nigeria Ltd.
The sack, which was announced on live television and covered by Arise TV and other news channels. Emefiele, in his speech, cited insider abuse, insider credit, and breakdown of corporate governance as the reason behind the apex bank’s move.
It was earlier reported that the CBN had queried First Bank, expressing concern that the appointment of Gbenga Shobo was done without the approval of the apex bank. The CBN also claimed that the tenure of the ousted Dr. Adesola Adedutan was yet to expire and as such, there was no justification for his removal.
In the press briefing on Thursday evening, Mr. Emefiele stated that the apex bank had been keeping close tabs on First Bank Nigeria over the past 5 years, having discovered that the bank was in “grave financial condition with its capital adequacy ratio (CAR) and non-performing loans ratio (NPL) substantially breaching acceptable prudential standards.”
In his words, “The insiders who took loans in the bank, with controlling influence on the board of directors, failed to adhere to the terms for the restructuring of their credit facilities which contributed to the poor financial state of the bank. The CBN’s recent target examination as of December 31, 2020, revealed that insider loans were materially non-compliant with restructuring terms (e.g. non-perfection of lien on shares/collateral arrangements) for over 3 years despite several regulatory reminders. The bank has not also divested its non-permissible holdings in non-financial entities in line with regulatory directives.”
Following the latest action of the Board of FBN Ltd in ousting Dr. Adeduntan and replacing him with his deputy, Mr. Gbenga Shobo outside of the apex bank’s consent, the CBN took the decision to issue all members of the Board of FBN Ltd and FBN Holding company, a red card, naming an interim Board headed by the now reinstated Dr. Adeduntan.
Below is a list of members of the newly constituted interim Board.
1.Chairman – Remi Babalola
2.Dr. Fatade Abiodun Oluwole
5.Dr. Alimi Abdulrasaq
8.Sir Peter Aliogo
9.UK Eke – Managing Director
1. Chairman – Tunde Hassan-Odukale
2. Tokunbo Martins
3. Uche Nwokedi
4. Adekunle Sonola
5. Isioma Ogodazi
6. Ebenezer Olufowose
7. Ishaya Elijah B. Dodo
8. Sola Adeduntan – Managing Director
9. Gbenga Shobo – Deputy Managing Director
10. Remi Oni – Executive Director
11. Abdullahi Ibrahim – Executive Director