CEM REPORT, EVENTS | The president and Chairman of Council of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, Dr Ken Opara, FCIB has emphasized the need for visionary leadership and collaborative effort to be able to harness the economic potential of Nigeria.
Dr Ken Opara said this on Saturday in his welcome remarks made at the 2023 edition of the Institute’s Fellowship Investiture held at the Queens’ Park, Victoria Island, Lagos.
The theme of the Fellowship Investiture ceremony was “Harnessing Nigeria’s Economic Potentials for Growth and Development: Strategic Imperatives”; a theme that the CIBN President found not have been better timed than now.
He noted that the ability of a nation to harness its inherent strength and overcome its challenges principally determine its success. Therefore, the growth and development of Nigeria is greatly rested on its ability to harness the human and natural resources that are inherently abundant to be able to surmount its challenges.
The challenges as enumerated by Dr Opara include inequality of income and opportunities, lack of job opportunities, high poverty level, regional inequality, political and social distortion and high inflation.
“The success of a nation is often determined by their ability to harness their inherent strength and overcome their challenges. Nigeria is blessed with abundant human and natural resources. It possesses incredible economic potentials.
“When you look at the fact that the total population of this country, 70% of it are the youth that 30 years and below. Given this fact, we recognize also the challenges in terms of inequality of income and opportunity, we also recognize the lack of job opportunity which of course has led us to have high poverty level, regional inequality and political and social distortion.
“We also know of high inflation that has taken toll on household welfare pushing more people into poverty.
“Surmounting these challenges require visionary leadership and collaborative effort”; Ken Opara said.
At the event, 20 Honorary Fellowship was conferred on deserving Nigerians that have made tremendous impact in the nation’s economy and especially those that have supported the Institute over time. Some of the personalities include GMD/CEO, United Bank for Africa Plc, Mr. Oliver Alawuba, Founder/CEO, Air Peace Nigeria, Barr. Allen Onyema, Founder/Chairman, LAPO Microfinance Bank, Dr. Godwin Ehigiamusoe, Founder & CEO WVL Development Advisers Ltd, Dr. Waheed Olagunju and CEO, Nigerian Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS) Mr. Premier Oiwoh.
MD/CEO, Premium Trust Bank, Mr. Emmanuel Emefienim, Executive Director, Corporate Services, NDIC, Mrs. Emily Osuji, MD/CEO, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, Mrs. Olusanya Miriam Chidiebele, Director, Banking Supervision, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Mustafa Haruna Bala and other notable bankers and finance experts also received the honorary fellowship.
The academicians were not left out of the honorary fellowship. Senior Fellow in the Operations, Information Systems, Lagos Business School, Prof. (Mrs.) Olayinka David-West, the Professor of Banking/Finance and Economic Development at University of Nigeria, Nsukka (Enugu Campus), Professor Josaphat. U. J. Onwumere and Professor of Law, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, Professor Oliyide, Olusesan Mujaid also received Fellowship of CIBN.
While 154 received the elected Fellowship having written the necessary exams and met other requirements for the highest level of membership, 270 received Honorary Senior Members of the Institute, (HCIB).
CIBN President, Awardees and Professionals spoke with CEM correspondence at the end of the event on several issues that bother on the CIBN fellowship award and economic growth of Nigeria