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Who Is Adaora Umeoji? Get To Know Zenith Bank’s First Female GMD/CEO

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Adaora Umeoji: Zenith Bank’s First Female GMD/CEO | Fab.ng

Adaora Umeoji is set to become Zenith Bank’s first-ever female Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer (GMD/CEO). Her term will begin on June 1, 2024, succeeding Ebenezer Onyeagwu. His five-year term comes to a close on May 31, 2024.

Ms. Umeoji brings nearly three decades of banking experience to the role, having served as the bank’s deputy managing director since October 2016. This appointment aligns with Zenith Bank’s established tradition of promoting from within and reflects its well-defined succession plan. We can expect to learn more about Ms. Umeoji’s background and qualifications in the following section.

Education

Adaora Umeoji’s educational background is incredibly well-rounded. She holds not just one but two bachelor’s degrees—one in Sociology from the University of Jos and another in Accounting from Baze University, where she impressively graduated with First-Class Honours in Law. Further expanding her knowledge, she obtained a Master of Laws from the University of Salford in the UK.

Umeoji didn’t stop there. She also pursued a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Calabar and even went on to earn a doctorate in Business Administration from Apollos University in the USA.

Her dedication to learning extends beyond traditional degrees. She sharpened her business acumen with a Certificate in Economics for Business from the prestigious MIT Sloan School of Management and complemented her leadership skills by completing executive programmes in Strategic Management and Leading Global Business at Harvard Business School.

Finally, she capped it all off with a Certificate in the Global Banking Program from Columbia Business School.

Fellowships and Professional Memberships

Adaora Umeoji’s expertise is further recognised through her numerous prestigious fellowships. These fellowships signify her commitment to professional excellence in various fields. Here’s a breakdown of her affiliations:

  • Chartered Banker Institute in the United Kingdom and the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria: These fellowships demonstrate her in-depth knowledge and experience in banking practices, both domestically and internationally.
  • Nigerian Institute of Management: This fellowship highlights her skills and qualifications in leadership and management positions.
  • Institute of Credit Administration: This fellowship indicates her expertise in credit analysis and risk management, crucial aspects of the banking industry.
  • Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Nigeria: This fellowship showcases her understanding of accounting principles and financial reporting.
  • Institute of Chartered Mediators and Conciliators: This fellowship suggests her training and experience in conflict resolution and negotiation, valuable assets in any business setting.
  • Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators of Nigeria: This fellowship indicates her proficiency in corporate governance and administration.

Honours and Awards

Adaora Umeoji’s achievements extend beyond the banking world. In recognition of her contributions to the nation, she was awarded the Officer of the Order of the Niger by the Federal Government of Nigeria in 2022. This prestigious honour acknowledges her positive impact on the country.

Umeoji is also a strong advocate for peace. The United Nations designated her as a Peace Advocate (UN-POLAC), highlighting her dedication to peaceful resolutions.

Furthermore, her commitment to helping others is undeniable. In 2023, the Sun Newspaper presented her with the Humanitarian Service Icon Award, a testament to her remarkable philanthropic efforts.

Philanthropic Activities

Adaora Umeoji’s passion for philanthropy extends beyond recognition. She is the driving force behind two impactful organizations: The Pink Breathe Cancer Care Foundation and the Adorable Foundation.

The Pink Breathe Cancer Care Foundation tackles healthcare issues head-on. They organize various healthcare programs throughout the year, reaching all six geopolitical zones of Nigeria. These programs prioritize providing essential medical care to those battling cancer and other illnesses.

Umeoji’s compassion extends further through the Adorable Foundation. This organization spearheads intervention initiatives that deliver relief materials and provide free healthcare services to internally displaced persons across the country.

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BUSINESS

These 4 Nigerian Banks Rank Among Africa’s Top Financial Institutions

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See Nigerian banks among Africa’s top financial institutions | fab.ng

Nigeria’s banking industry is making a big splash. Four Nigerian banks have been steadily climbing the ranks and are now considered some of the top financial institutions in Africa. This feat has been further amplified by a recent report from Global Finance, a respected authority on international finance.

Their spotlight on Africa’s best financial institutions has brought even more attention to Nigeria’s growing power in the African financial landscape. These banks haven’t achieved their success overnight. Their rise to prominence signifies a strong and stable foundation and a commitment to financial health.

This recognition by Global Finance isn’t just a win for the banks themselves but for all of Nigeria. It positions the country as a key player in Africa’s financial future and has the potential to attract foreign investment, boost confidence in the domestic banking system, and encourage further growth within the financial sector itself.

This is just the beginning for Nigerian banks. With their newfound recognition, these top-ranked institutions have the potential to expand their reach even further across Africa. This will provide innovative financial solutions to a wider range of customers. The future of African finance looks bright, and Nigerian banks are well-positioned to be at the forefront.

Let’s take a look at these banks below:

1. Zenith Bank Plc

Zenith Bank boasts a global team of over 10,000 employees. This extensive staff ensures they have the manpower to handle a large customer base and deliver quality service.

The bank has a massive physical presence within Nigeria, with a network of 500 branches and business offices. This extensive reach allows them to serve customers in a variety of locations across the country.

Zenith Bank isn’t satisfied with dominating the Nigerian market. They’ve strategically expanded their reach into other African nations, including Ghana, Sierra Leone, Gambia, and South Africa. This global presence positions them as a major player in the African financial landscape.

2. Access Bank

Access Bank is a successful commercial bank that operates in many African countries. They include Ghana and even have a branch in the United Kingdom. It’s part of a larger group of companies called Access Bank Group.

Access Bank is always looking to grow its business and recently made a move to expand into Kenya. To show how serious they are about growing in Kenya, they made an offer to buy a Kenyan bank named National Bank of Kenya.

3. United Bank for Africa (UBA)

The United Bank for Africa, or UBA for short, is very successful in Africa. They’ve won awards for their great service in countries like Burkina Faso and Sierra Leone.

UBA is a major player in African finance with over 1,000 branches spread across 20 African countries and more than 21 million customers.

However, there might be some trouble ahead. Recent political changes in Burkina Faso could make it difficult for UBA to operate there as smoothly.

4. Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB)

Guaranty Trust Bank, or GTB for short, was founded in 1990 and has grown into a very important financial institution around the world.

In 2021, they did a big reorganization and changed their name to GTCO Plc. This change also allowed them to grow their business even further. They opened offices in more and more places across Africa and even outside the continent.

Their dedication to doing a great job and keeping their customers happy is shown in how they were recently named the best bank in Gambia.

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10 African Countries Where Cryptocurrency Is Restricted

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Cryptocurrency: 10 African Countries Where It Has No Use | Fab.ng

Cryptocurrency transactions remain banned in some African countries, despite the potential for regulatory frameworks to support their development.

According to Chainalysis, Africa is one of the fastest-growing crypto markets globally, with Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa having the highest number of users in the region.

Many governments are wary of digital assets due to concerns over money laundering, illicit activities, tax evasion, and financial fraud, as cryptocurrency transactions can be hard to trace.

In 2021, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) ordered banks to close all customer accounts involved in cryptocurrency transactions. However, this ban was lifted in December 2023.

On May 6, 2024, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) increased restrictions by delisting the naira from all peer-to-peer (P2P) platforms. The Director-General of the SEC, Emomotimi Agama, mentioned that the government is drafting new regulations for the crypto sector, following the advice of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Here are countries in Africa where crypto transactions or digital currencies has no use:

Tunisia is one of the African countries taking a particularly cautious approach to cryptocurrency. Back in 2018, their central bank made headlines by actually criminalising the use of cryptocurrencies.

They issued a strong statement warning people against using any digital asset that the Tunisian government did not officially approve. This strict stance shows just how seriously some African countries are taking the potential risks associated with cryptocurrency.

Sierra Leone has been very cautious about cryptocurrency. In 2019, their central bank took a strong stance against it. They shut down two cryptocurrency companies and made it clear that they wouldn’t be granting any licences to businesses or banks that wanted to deal with cryptocurrency deposits or trading.

This shows that Sierra Leone is concerned about the potential risks involved with cryptocurrency and is taking steps to limit its use in the country.

The situation regarding cryptocurrency in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is a bit unclear. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) reports that the Congolese government has completely banned cryptocurrency.

However, a 2018 study by Ecobank suggests the opposite. They found no official statements from either the Congolese government or the Central Bank regarding cryptocurrency’s legality or use.

This lack of clear communication from Congolese authorities makes it difficult to say for sure what the official stance is on cryptocurrency. However, from the IMF reports, it is assumed that the government does not accept its use.

Ghana is another African country taking a wait-and-see approach to cryptocurrency. The Ghanaian government has completely banned crypto transactions within the country.

Despite the ban, the government is still interested in the underlying technology behind cryptocurrency, blockchain. They’re currently studying how blockchain could be used to improve Ghana’s payment systems.

This cautious approach is evident in their actions. In 2022, they reaffirmed the 2018 ban on using cryptocurrency for any financial transactions in Ghana.

Algeria has a strict ban on cryptocurrency. Back in 2018, their parliament passed a law that completely restricted digital currency activity in the country. This law prohibits Algerians from buying, selling, using, or even just owning cryptocurrency.

In 2018, the country’s central bank raised a red flag about cryptocurrency. They issued a statement warning people against promoting or investing in crypto because it wasn’t regulated or officially licensed by the government. This suggests they’re concerned about the potential risks involved.

Morocco’s relationship with cryptocurrency has been a rollercoaster. In 2017, the Ministry of Economy slammed the brakes on crypto transactions, fearing they violated the country’s exchange regulations. This meant a complete ban on buying, selling, or trading cryptocurrency in Morocco.

However, things seem to be changing. In 2023, there was a positive shift. Morocco’s central bank announced they were working on drafting new regulations specifically for crypto trading. This suggests a move towards a more controlled and monitored crypto market in Morocco.

Tanzania is another African country where cryptocurrency exists in a bit of a grey area. There aren’t any written laws or regulations specifically about cryptocurrency transactions in Tanzania.

However, the Tanzanian central bank has taken a cautious approach. They issued a public statement advising people against trading or using virtual currencies like Bitcoin. The bank made it very clear that the only official currency recognised in Tanzania is the Tanzanian shilling.

Cryptocurrency is a hot topic in Central Africa, but there are no clear rules yet. Cameroon, for example, belongs to the Central African Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC). This means they use the Central African CFA franc, managed by the Bank of Central African States (BEAC).

Right now, the BEAC hasn’t set any regulations for crypto trading. This might seem surprising considering the growing popularity of crypto. However, the good news is that the Cameroon government is working on it. They’re currently reviewing new rules to create a framework for cryptocurrency use in the country.

Things are complicated when it comes to cryptocurrency in Egypt. In 2018, a major Islamic legal authority called Dar al-Iftai issued a religious decree. This decree said that trading Bitcoin goes against Islamic law (Sharia Law). They basically classified it as forbidden, which is the meaning of the word “haram.”

This was followed by a move from the Egyptian Central Bank in 2019. They announced plans to create a new law. This law would make it illegal to create, trade, or even promote cryptocurrency without a special licence.

So, while using digital currency isn’t completely banned, it seems Egyptian officials are cautious about it and want to regulate it very closely.

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Employment Will Teach You These 10 Lessons

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Employment Will Teach You These Lessons | Fab.ng

Employment, or working for a living, can be a double-edged sword.

Sure, employment is a great way to achieve financial security and independence. It allows you to pay your bills, afford the things you need and want, and build a nest egg for the future. But let’s be honest, it also comes with challenges you might not expect when you’re first starting out.

Let’s explore these employment lessons below:

1. Startup costs can be a hurdle

You start a job to earn money, but you also need money upfront for things like professional work clothes, reliable transportation to get to and from work, and maybe even some basic office supplies. It can feel ironic that you invest your own money just to be able to make more money at your new job.

2. The Monday blues can hit hard

If you’re not passionate about your job and employment, Mondays can feel especially dreadful. It’s tough to be motivated and energised to tackle a long week of tasks you don’t enjoy, even if the work itself is relatively easy. This can affect your overall mood and productivity.

3. Making ends meet can be a constant juggling act

You work diligently every day, putting in your hours and effort. But depending on your employment salary, your paycheck might only come once a month.

This can make it challenging to budget effectively and ensure you have enough money to cover all your expenses throughout the entire month. It might require some creativity and financial planning to stretch your paycheck as far as possible.

4. Payday loans can become a trap

If you’re not careful with your money management and overspend throughout the month, you might find yourself broke before your next paycheck arrives. It can be tempting to resort to payday loans or credit cards to cover your essential expenses until payday.

However, these options often come with high interest rates and fees, which can trap you in a cycle of debt and make it even harder to manage your finances in the long run.

5. Your well-being is paramount

When you’re desperate for a job and trying to get your foot in the door, you might downplay the importance of work-life balance and readily agree to work under pressure on your resume. But a job that constantly stresses you out and takes a toll on your mental health might not be worth it in the long run.

There are some things money can’t buy, like peace of mind, good health, and strong relationships. It’s important to get employment that offers a healthy work-life balance and doesn’t come at the expense of your well-being.

6. The side hustle can be a lifesaver

When your income from your main job isn’t enough to cover your bills and your desired lifestyle, you might find yourself brainstorming ways to make more money on the side.

This could involve starting a freelance business, taking on a part-time gig, or exploring other avenues to supplement your income.

The extra income can help you achieve your financial goals faster, reduce financial stress, and give you more breathing room in your budget.

7. Health truly is wealth

One unexpected illness or injury can wipe out your savings quickly. Medical bills and medications can be very expensive, and even basic health insurance might not cover everything. This makes staying healthy even more important.

Taking preventative measures like eating healthy, getting regular exercise, and getting enough sleep can help you avoid costly health problems down the road.

8. Relaxation is key to avoiding burnout

If you don’t take breaks and prioritise relaxation, you might get sick, which can be a financial burden due to missed workdays and medical bills.

It’s important to schedule time for vacations, hobbies, and activities that help you de-stress and recharge. A well-rested and relaxed employee is a more productive and resilient employee in the long run.

9. Sometimes privacy is necessary

Depending on your social circle and financial situation, you might try to hide the fact that you have a job, especially if people around you constantly ask for money.

You might avoid them to escape the pressure to lend them money or give financial handouts. This can be a way to protect your financial security and avoid feeling taken advantage of.

10. Appreciation for your parents grows

Seeing how quickly money comes and goes can make you appreciate your parents more. You realise it wasn’t easy for them to provide for you when you were younger.

They likely had to make sacrifices and manage their finances carefully to make ends meet. This newfound understanding can bring you closer to your parents and give you greater respect for their hard work.

Even though having employment has its challenges, it doesn’t mean being unemployed is better. Life can be tough, but you can learn to develop strong financial habits, find a job that aligns with your values, and prioritise your well-being to navigate the complexities of working life.

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