DR.KINGSLEY OBIORA, Chairman, Board of Directors
Dr. Kingsley Obiora
— Chairman, Board of Directors
Dr. Kingsley Obiora resumed as a Deputy Governor in the Central Bank of Nigeria on 02 March 2020, following which he was appointed as Chairman Board of Directors of the Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM). Prior to this, he was an Alternate Executive Director in the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington DC, USA. In this capacity, he was a member of the Executive Board, collectively responsible for conducting the daily operations of the IMF. He also assisted to represent the interests of 23 African Countries, including Nigeria, at the Board.
He first joined the IMF through the globally-competitive “Economist Program” in 2007 and worked in both the European Department as well as the Strategy, Policy and Review Department, whilst carrying out extensive work on exchange rate assessment, debt sustainability analyses, decoupling and spillovers, real sector analyses, as well as several reviews of Financial Sector Assessments. Prior to this, Dr. Obiora worked at the West African Monetary Institute in Accra, Ghana and the Centre for Econometric and Allied Research at the University of Ibadan.
While on secondment from the IMF, Dr. Obiora simultaneously served as Technical Adviser to the Nigeria’s National Economic Management Team as well as Special Assistant to President Jonathan’s Chief Economic Adviser from October 2011 to May 2014. During this time, he played key roles in helping to shape the country’s economic policies on several fronts, including on energy subsidies, power sector reform, measurement of job creation, architecture of development financing, diversification of the economy, oil price benchmarking in the budgetary process, regulatory framework for doing business, port reform, and asset-based economic mapping and modeling.
From June 2014 until July 2018, Dr. Obiora served as Special Adviser on Economic Matters to the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). During this role, he contributed to the overall analytical and policy work of the CBN, bringing his extensive international and domestic economic experiences to bear in helping the Bank understand the ramifications of, and deal with spillovers from, the external shocks emanating from the significant drop in global oil prices.
Dr. Obiora has a first degree from the University of Benin as well as Masters and Doctorate degrees in Economics from the University of Ibadan.
ABUBAKAR A. BELLO, Managing Director/CEO
Abubakar A. Bello
— Managing Director/CEO
Abba Bello has over 30 years’ experience in banking, where he has held senior management positions in corporate banking, regional and commercial banking, and public sector banking in more than a decade. Abba also had a brief stint in auditing.
Until his appointment as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Export-Import Bank in April 2017, he was Executive Director, Unity Bank Plc, in charge of Corporate Banking, Agriculture and North Directorate.
Abba has cognate experience in international banking. He was the pioneer Managing Director/CEO of United Bank for Africa Plc’s subsidiaries in the Republic of Chad and Zambia for several years.
Abba has attended several courses in Nigeria and abroad in leadership, advanced management, and executive management. He is a member of Chartered Institute of Bankers Nigeria, a Fellow, Institute of Credit Administration, and a member of the Institute of Directors. He is an Alumnus of the Advanced Management Programme of the Havard Business School, USA.
PHILIP YILA YUSUF, Director
Philip Yila Yusuf
Philip Yila Yusuf, a professional in a wide range of industry segments: Financial Services, Oil & Gas, Cybersecurity, Homeland Security, Aviation, and education etc.
Currently, he is the Director, Development Finance Department, Central Bank of Nigeria and the erstwhile Managing Director/Chief Executive, NIRSAL Microfinance Bank (NMFB).
He joined the services of the Central Bank of Nigeria in June 2011 from Oando Plc where he was General Manager Operations for the downstream business. He first joined Habib Nigeria Bank Limited in 1998 as the Head Network/Telecommunication, where he championed the design and rollout of 55 branch network infrastructure, full life cycle of projects. In 2004, he moved to Oando Plc as the Network Support Manager, where he rose to General Manager Operations. Whilst carrying out his roles, he developed a long-range technology plan for downstream depots and terminals. He has a proven track record of strong leadership, innovation, and business growth.
He holds a Bachelor of Engineering Degree in Electrical/Electronics Engineering from the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO) and is an Alumnus of the prestigious Harvard Business School, Boston. He has also attended several executive courses at Oxford, Harvard Kennedy, Northwestern University, Kellogg Schoool of Management. He attended professional certifications within and outside Nigeria in CIO Pocket MBA, Chief Information Officer, Business Process Reengineering, IS Security, Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery amongst others.
He loves Football and has developed an interest in Counterterrorism/counter insurgent, Hunting and Aviation. He is married with Children.
STEPHEN OKON, Director
BABA GANA ALKALI, Director
Baba Gana Alkali
Mr. Baba Gana Alkali is a distinguished career Civil Servant with over 32 years of experience. He received a B.Sc. Political Science and Administration from the University of Maiduguri in 1987 and obtained Master’s in International Politics from the University of Hull, United Kingdom in 2008.
Mr. Alkali is the current Director [Policy, Planning, Research and Statistics Department], Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment who coordinates all the activities of the Ministry and its Agencies. Mr. Alkali worked in various Ministries in Nigeria in the cause of his public service career. Prominent amongst them include: Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Defence and Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation. He has simultaneously been a member of many Ad-hoc Committees at various points throughout his career.
He has attended various courses within the country and abroad which has added value to his extensive work experience. Some of his many achievements include a Letter of Commendation from the former Honourable Minister of Agriculture Mallam Adamu Bello, CFR for outstanding performance in the discharge of his duties and dedication to his work as his Chief of Protocol (2001-2007).
Mr. Alkali is a highly motivated and result-oriented person who dedicates his time to the achievement of individual and organizational goals.
DR. BALA M BELLO, Executive Director, Corporate Services
Dr. Bala M Bello
— Executive Director (Corporate Services)
Dr. Bala Bello has more than two decades experience in the financial services industry, spanning through banking, capital market and pension fund management. He has worked in senior executive level in the last seven years prior to his appointment as Executive Director at the Nigerian Export Export-Import Bank in 2017.
Dr. Bello holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting, and an MBA, both from The Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
He began his banking career with Guaranty Trust Bank Plc; and later joined the Securities and Exchange Commission. In 2005, he joined Sigma Pensions Ltd, and was appointed the first Nigerian Executive Director/Chief Operating Officer in 2011 and later Executive Director Operations from 2013 to 2014. In this capacity, he had direct administrative responsibility for over N260 billion ($1.5 billion) funds/assets under management (A-U-M).
Dr. Bala established and served as the founding CEO of Marine Capital Limited, a real estate development and business/pensions advisory firm in February 2015; and subsequently joined Apricot Investments Limited in March 2016 as the pioneer Managing Director/CEO.
Dr. Bala has completed the High Potential Leadership Program at Harvard Business School, Boston, Massachusetts and Executive Development Program at Wharton Business School, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania both in the United States of America. He also holds a certificate in Operations Leadership from the prestigious Richard Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario, Canada, as well as Portfolio Management Academy Certificate at the New York Institute of Finance. He has also successfully completed modules 1 & 2 of the highly sought-after GMP programme at the Harvard Business School in March 2020.
He is an honorary senior member of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, a Fellow of the Institute of Credit administration, a member of the Institute of Directors, a member of the Certified Pension Institute of Nigeria, and a member of the Nigerian Institute of Management. He was conferred with Doctor of Philosophy (Honoris Causa) in Leadership and Management by ESAE University, Republic of Benin, and Doctor of Business Administration (Honoris Causa) by Commonwealth University in conjunction with London Graduate School.
HON. STELLA OKOTETE, Executive Director (Business Development)
Hon. Stella Okotete
— Executive Director (Business Development)
Hon. Stella Okotete possesses significant experience in public policy design and implementation, public-private partnership management, international development and general administration.
A graduate of the Benson Idahosa University, Benin City, from where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and Diplomacy, Stella also holds a Diploma in Law from the Rivers State College of Arts and Sciences.
Until her appointment as Executive Director, Business Development, Stella had a rich mix of professional experience in both the public and private sectors. In 2015, she founded and led a start-up company where she was responsible for providing local and international clients with expert advice, scalable industrial solutions, and opportunities to utilise turnkey solutions for various industrial needs and requirements.
Between 2011 and 2015, she served as the Special Assistant and Adviser to the Executive Governor of Delta State on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) where she provided leadership in establishing and executing programmes with agency groups to ensure that the goals as well as targets of the United Nations Millennium Declaration were met. In this regard, she championed the Review and effective management of the Micro-Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) business policy to tackle poverty and create employment in line with MDGs mandate. She also supported the M&E team of the State’s CCT Scheme and Social Development Policy that aided the growth and expansion of business clusters in the state.
Prior to leading the Delta State MDGs, Stella had a brief stint in politics, having served as an elected Councillor in Ughelli North Local Government Area, a position that helped sharpen her understanding of the socio-economic needs of neglected communities. She was able to deploy this knowledge to ensure that neglected communities in the state were positively impacted by the state’s MDGs strategic intervention programmes.
Stella is the Co Founder E’Girls Right Foundation and an alumnus of Harvard Kennedy School certificate program for Emerging Leaders as well as the Lagos Business School’s Enterprise Development Centre program in Entrepreneurial Management. She is keenly involved in volunteer work and has worked with Internally Displaced Persons at IDP Camps in Ughelli, Maiduguri and Abuja.
CHIEF. EDE O. DAFINONE, Director
Chief Ede O. Dafinone
Ede is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, (ICAEW) a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN). He has a BA (Hons) in Economics from the University of Manchester and an MA in Economics from the University of Exeter.
Ede is the Deputy Managing Partner of Crowe Dafinone, chartered accountants, based in Lagos, having started his career with Touche Ross & Co in London in 1984 he joined his family firm in 1989. He currently serves as the Chairman of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) Members Advisory Board for Africa and is a Council member for the ICAEW having been appointed in June 2019.
Ede is the Chairman of the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (2015 to date) having joined the Board as the Treasurer in 1989.
Through Sapele Integrated Industries Limited, Ede is an exporter of processed rubber and is currently the Chairman of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria Export Promotion Group (MANEG).
Through the Dafinone foundation, Ede runs social and community projects to provide scholarships for post graduate education, disburse micro-credit loans to women and support the development of vocational skills within Delta State. Ede serves as the Chairman of the Sapele Okpe Community Land Trust Association and is the Treasurer of the Okpe Leaders of Thought.
As a trustee of the Guild of Fine Artists since 2009 Ede has supported the development of the growth of the fine arts in Nigeria.
MR. KABIRU HASSAN, Director