In what it says a further demonstration of its commitment to diversity, the board of United Bank for Africa Plc, in a major shakeup announced on Monday in its across its African subsidiaries, appointed Mrs. Abiola Bawuah, a Ghanaian, the first female Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the subgroup that currently contributes significantly to its top and bottom-line.
By that appointment, she also joins the group’s board as an Executive Director, overseeing its operations in 19 countries across the continent, outside of the Nigerian flagship, in addition to global operations in New York, London, Paris and the United Arab Emirates.
Prior to Bawuah’s appointment which brings to eight, the number of female directors on the UBA Group board, she was Regional CEO, West Africa, supervising the Group’s operations in nine subsidiaries, including Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Senegal, and Sierra Leone.
Before then also, she was former CEO, UBA Ghana.
Commenting on the new appointment, the Group’s Chairman, Tony Elumelu acknowledged Mrs. Bawuah’s significant contribution “to the growth of UBA Africa for close to a decade.
“She brings a wealth of experience in commercial banking, and stakeholder engagement. It also gives me great pleasure that with her appointment, the UBA Group Board has now become a majority female board,” he added.
The UBA Group also announced fresh appointments into executive roles, including those of Chris Ofikulu, who becomes Regional CEO, UBA West Africa, replacing Mrs. Bawuah; Ayokunle Olajubu, MD/CEO of UBA Liberia; Theresa Henshaw, CEO of UBA UK, replacing Adeyemi Adeleke, who assumes the role of Group Treasurer; Usman Isiaka, currently CEO, UBA Sierra Leone, moves to UBA America as Deputy CEO, while Uzoechina Molokwu, becomes Deputy Managing Director (DMD) of UBA Ghana.
All the new appointments are subject to local regulatory approvals.
Ofikulu has over two decades of banking experience spanning corporate, commercial, and retail banking; while Molokwu who was previously Executive Director, Business Development at UBA Côte d’Ivoire has over 23 years banking experience.
Olajubu currently drives compliance across Africa subsidiaries, and comes with 30 years banking experience in Nigeria and other African countries, including Sierra Leone, Cote D’Ivoire and the Gambia; Henshaw was previously the DMD, Business Development, UBA America and joined the Group as ED, Business Development at UBA UK.
On his part, Adeleke will be working to unlock the immense value in the Group’s multi-jurisdictional balance sheet, leveraging on its presence in 24 countries within and beyond Africa.
In addition to the executive appointments, the group announced in its statement the retirement of High Chief Samuel Oni, an independent non-executive Director, from the Board following the expiration of his tenure, having joined the group in January 2015 and serving for eight years.
Elumelu expressed his appreciation to High Chief Oni, for his commitment, leadership and extensive contributions to the UBA Group and on behalf of the board, wished him the very best in all his future endeavours.