By Rev Solomon Semaka
An African proverb says one tree does not make a forest. This underscores the relentless spirit of teamwork and the fact that we all depend on each other to succeed and be fulfilled in life. The ability to work with and inspire people is the hallmark of excellent leadership since creation and it can not be any different in the 21st century. When diverse ideas are sourced and fine-tuned through an atmosphere of mutual respect, great things happen. That is why it is often said that two heads are better than one and team players will always have better results resplendent with the current CBN leadership under Mr Godwin Emiefele.
For the CBN Governor, he is not just working with just two heads, but also drawing from a pool of multiple and experienced technocrats in his deputy governors. That is why his success at the bank has been far-reaching and unprecedented in the history of the apex financial institution in Nigeria.
One of Emefiele’s pillars of support is the Deputy Governor for the Financial Systems Stability Directorate, Hajiya Aishah N. Ahmad. For the brief period she has been in charge of the Financial Systems Directorate, she has revolutionized the Financial Institutions Training Centre (FITC) which she’s the Chairman, making it a top-notch non-profit financial training centre with key competencies in research and consultancy. Aishah has over 22 years of professional experience working and strengthening the financial sector in Nigeria. Her constant search for knowledge has earned her different academic qualifications both from Nigeria and abroad. Her services to the CBN have continued to enrich the CBN and Nigeria’s economy. She remains focused and dependable ever since appointment by president Muhamadu Buhari.
Another giant pillar of support upon whose shoulders Emefiele has continued to lean for guidance and teamwork is
Mr. Edward Lamekek Adamu is the
Deputy Governor, Corporate Services Directorate. The quantity surveyor turned banker who has spent more than three decades of his working life in the CBN has revolutionized the corporate banking department. Having worked in the bank for most of his service years, his cognate experience has helped in no small measure in supporting the policies and programmes of the apex bank. A widely travelled scholar, administrator, negotiator and passionate leader. Mr. Edward is not just Emefiele’s Deputy, but a professional whose pieces of advice are taken seriously. His numerous trainings and professional qualifications have not just benefited him, but the entire country. He remains loyal and commited to his roles hence the corporate stability of the apex bank in recent years.
Mr. Folashodun Adebisi Shonubi,
Deputy Governor, Operations Directorate is another strong hand that has helped Emefiele to reach the height he has attained now as the best Governor of the CBN since its establishment. The Mechanical Engineer and administrator has over 30 years of professional experience in the financial and banking sector. Before joining the CBN, he held the position as CEO in the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System PLC from 2012 to 2018, having worked in different banks and financial institutions. The seamless operation of the CBN and Commercial Banks has become possible because of his wealth of experience. While the CBN as an institution takes credit for the great strides this gentlemen and their teams have brought to bear on the bank, it is good we remember and honour them for their selfless service to the nation.
Another wonderful partner in progress and confidant of Chief Emefiele is
Dr. Kingsley Obiora,
Deputy Governor Economic Policy Directorate. Dr. Kingsley Obiora resumed as a Deputy Governor in the Central Bank of Nigeria on 02 March, 2020, having worked with the IMF and risen to the position of an Alternate Executive Director. His work at the IMF was diverse, making him grounded in the nitty-gritty of international cross border financial services in the world. He has played key roles in helping shape the country’s economic policies on several fronts, including energy subsidies, power sector reform, measurement of job creation, the architecture of development financing, diversification of the economy, benchmarking in the budgetary process and so on.
Indeed his international work experience and education have exposed him and have been of tremendous help to the CBN and Nigeria at large.
Chief Godwin Emefiele together with his Deputy Governors equally serve as Board Members of the CBN in addition to Non-Executive members like Prof. Justitia O. Nnabuko, Adeola S. Adetunji, Prof. Mike I. Obadan and Prof. Ummu A. Jalingo. Others are, the
Accountant General of the Federation, Mr. Ahmed Idris, Dr. Abdu Abubakar and Mr. Aliyu Ahmed. A formidable team like this with an expert and dedicated leader like Emefiele cannot fail. These Patriots have sacrificed their lives and talents to make the Nigerian economy better. They share in the success story of Chief Emefiele and are the best examples of two heads being better than one.
The Federal Government should as a matter of urgency award this great patriots with national honours to spur them to greater endeavours and encourage other Nigerians to be loyal to the institutions they serve for the good of the country. Rather than vilifying this formidable team of experts for political correctness, Nigerians should rather focus on bringing out the best in them so that our economy can continue to grow and be the envy of other nations globally.
Semaka is the convener of Save Nigeria Movement.