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Remi Babalola Quits FBN Holdings as Chairman

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Remi Babalola

By Dipo Olowookere

The Chairman of FBN Holdings Plc, Mr Remi Babalola, has exited his position barely nine months after he was appointed to occupy the seat.

The former Minister of State for Finance was appointed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on April 29, 2021, to head the board of directors of the organisation.

This followed the removal of Mr Oba Otudeko from the position by the apex bank after a boardroom crisis threatened the financial institution.

It is unclear why Mr Babalola has decided to resign from the position, though the financial services group is yet to formally announce the development.

The exit of the Chairman from the firm is coming a few days after it was confirmed that Mr Femi Otedola has made a significant investment in FBN Holdings with the acquisition of additional 200 million shares of the organisation, raising his stake to over 7 per cent.

It is not certain if this development will affect the share price of FBN Holdings at the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited next week.

When the market closed for the week on Friday, the price of the company’s stock rose by 0.42 per cent or 5 kobo to sell for N12.00.

The equity value has been on a roller coaster lately with heavy transactions through cross deals as the battle for who controls the company between Mr Otedola and Mr Tunde Hassan-Odukale thickens.

The CBN has seen the silent tussle as a good development and has expressed happiness with this because according to the Governor of the apex bank, a few years ago, First Bank shares were not attractive to investors.

“Six years ago, as I said, because of an aggressive build-up of NPLs, the share price of First Bank was about N2. We took it up. Then, everybody was running away from the shares of First Bank.

“We have cleaned the balance sheet now, people are seeing that the money-making machine, First Bank, is back on its feet. They are in the race for profitability. They are now competing for the shares of First Bank. As of the last time I checked over the weekend, the share price was more N11.

“Why should I quarrel about that? “I am happy to see that they are competing for the shares. Of course, we all know that First Bank is so large that no single person can own it. In running the banks, they should see themselves as representing others,” he had told newsmen in Abuja last month.

It is believed that Mr Otedola, being the new single largest shareholder of the bank, will likely nominate someone to become chairman of FGN Holdings.

Business Post cannot immediately confirm if this will happen soon or the CBN will appoint an acting chairman for the company to fill the vacant position left by Mr Babalola.

In the coming days, a former CEO of Fidelity Bank, Mr Nnamdi Okonkwo, is expected to take over as the Group Managing Director of FBN Holdings, replacing Mr U.K Eke, who retires on December 31, 2021.

Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan. Mr Olowookere can be reached via dipo.olowookere@businesspost.ng

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Jobs/Appointments

Buhari Swears-in Bello Shehu as RMAFC Chairman

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Mohammed Bello Shehu

By Adedapo Adesanya

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday, August 17 swore in the newly appointed Chairman of the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC), Mr Mohammed Bello Shehu.

The new RMAFC chairman was administered an oath in the council chamber of the State House in Abuja just before the president presided over the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting.

Speaking with journalists after the swearing-in, Mr Shehu explained that although the task ahead of him is daunting, he is certain that the commission will assist the Buhari-led administration to block leakages.

He also noted that he will assist the appropriate bodies to generate more revenue for the Federation and implement its constitutional responsibility.

As one of the 14 constitutional Commissions, the RMAFC chairman maintained that he will ensure that the commission’s independence is upheld as enshrined within the Constitution.

Alongside the president, others physically in attendance at the FEC meeting included the Secretary to Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha; Chief of Staff to the President, Mr Ibrahim Gambari; and National Security Adviser, Maj. Gen. Babagana Mungonu (rtd).

Others were Ministers of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, and Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami; Mines and Steel Development, Mr Olamilekan Adegbite, Niger Delta, Mr Umana Umana; Power, Mr Abubakar Aliyu, Sports, Mr Sunday Dare; Water Resources, Mr Suliaman Adamu, Science and Technology, Mr Olorunibe Mamora.

Also in attendance were the Ministers of Water Resources, Federal Capital Territory, Mr Mohammed Bello, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, Agriculture, Mohammed Abubakar, Aviation, Mr Hadi Sirika, Mines and Steel Development, Mr Olamilekan Adegbite and Minister of State Education, Mr Goodluck Opia.

The Vice President, Mr Yemi Osinbajo joined virtually as well as the Head of Service of the Federation, Mrs Folashade Yemi-Esan and other ministers.

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Hann Succeeds Chimphondah as Shelter Afrique CEO

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Hann Shelter Afrique

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

Shelter Afrique has announced the appointment of Mr Thierno-Habib Hann as its new chief executive officer, replacing Mr Andrew Chimphondah, who left the company early this year.

A statement from the Nairobi-based pan African housing development financier disclosed that Mr Hann brings to the company over 20 years of experience in housing finance, capital markets and structured finance.

According to the chairman of Shelter Afrique, Mr Ephraim Bichetero, the selection of the new CEO was very competitive, based on merit and competence.

He is expected to strengthen governance, be an embodiment of the values of the organisation and drive the investment strategy of the firm focused on delivering large-scale affordable housing.

“Mr Hann has extensive international experience in housing finance, capital markets and structured finance, set-up and management of investment funds with banking and multilateral institutions, spanning over 20 years.

“He brings with him a wealth of leadership experience in development and investment, sharp insight in the real estate landscape and a strong track record of delivery. Over the years, he has developed housing finance transactions in the US, Latin America and Eastern Europe, valued over $32 billion,” Mr Bichetero said.

Business Post gathered that Mr Hann will not resume office at the moment because he currently serves as the Asia/Pacific Lead for housing finance at the International Finance Corporation (IFC) based in Bangkok, where he leads the strategy development and implementation of the housing finance program with a portfolio of over $2 billion.

He will join the organization at the end of his current contract with IFC and in the interim, Mr Muwowo will continue to serve as Acting Managing Director.

Mr Hann, a native of Guinea, began his career at the consulting firm Arthur Andersen, LLC as a Senior Consultant in Financial Services and Capital Markets in New York City.

He has worked at JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs as Manager and Vice President respectively and led investment teams issuing mortgage-backed securities (RMBS/CMO), and credit derivatives (CDS) in these organizations.

He also served at the World Bank Group as the Private Sector Development Program Manager in Guinea, responsible for designing and implementing the business climate improvement program, while developing a bankable pipeline of investments and government advisory projects in strategic sectors of the economy.

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Electricity Workers Threatens Strike from Today

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electricity workers

By Adedapo Adesanya

Organised labour has directed workers in the power sector to down tools and commence an indefinite strike from Wednesday, August 17 over pending labour issues with the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).

The National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) on Tuesday demonstrated at the headquarters of the TCN in Abuja.

They complained about the alleged failure of the federal government to pay the entitlement of former staff of the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) in December 2019.

The aggrieved workers under the aegis of the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) said this is a prelude to an indefinite strike action expected to commence today.

In a circular entitled “call to action”, the General Secretary of NUEE, Mr Joe Ajaero, directed them to ensure total compliance, vowing to paralyse operations of TCN nationwide over what they consider “anti-masses activities.”

This means the nation’s electricity supply crisis could worsen from Wednesday following this decision if an impasse is not reached.

“You are hereby enjoined to mobilise immediately for a serious picketing of TCN Headquarters and stations nationwide over the directive by the TCN Board that all PMs in acting capacity going to AGM must appear for a promotion interview,” the circular read.

“This directive is in contravention of our conditions of service and career progression paths, and unilaterally done without the relevant stakeholders.

‘’This action takes effect from Tuesday 16th August 2022 and total withdrawal of services commences on Wednesday 17th August 2022. Ensure full compliance in all the stations nationwide.”

This will not be the first time electricity workers will threaten to put the nation in darkness. On May 18, the union issued a 14-day ultimatum to the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, MD/CEO of the company.

In the circular titled “Unresolved issues on the year 2021 promotion exercise and others,” the union threatened to down tools at the expiration of the ultimatum if its grievances were not addressed.

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