President of African Development Bank (AfDB) Dr Akinwumi Adesina on Saturday tasked leaders in the banking sector on “audacious leadership” to navigate challenges of COVID-19 pandemic and restore hope and confidence in Africa.
Adesina gave the charge at the 2020 Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) Fellowship Investiture with the theme, “Financial Services in a Post COVID-19 Environment: Strategic Imperatives”.
The event, held in Lagos and also attended virtually, saw several leaders in the banking sector across the country and the continent being conferred with awards as Honorary Fellows, Elected Fellows and Honorary Senior Members.
The bank president expressed delight at being decorated with the emblems of admission and recognition.
“Today, as we are being honored, consider us as “security-backed assets”. Our integrity is our honor, and our honor is our security.
“We wish to express to the Council of the CIBN, our commitment to carry these awards with dignity, integrity and honor.
“Leadership from each one of us is needed in these challenging times of the Coronavirus pandemic,” he said.
Adesina charged leaders to work to grow back the country and continent safer, healthier and with greater resilience.
He stressed that honorary awards were deposits of trust that came with great responsibilities of selfless work, being exemplary and role models in the profession and for the society.
“Now, let us arise and collectively support Nigeria to recover and build back, stronger, better, with greater economic resilience. Let’s join hands and deliver greater prosperity and hope for Nigeria.
“For Nigeria to be at its best, it deserves the best from all of us.
“As Honorary Fellows, we promise to continue to be beacons of hope, carrying with dignity, the green and gold emblems of the CIBN,” Adesina said.
The AfDB president noted the challenges that the pandemic had on African and global economies and development.
He, however, reiterated the contributions of the AfDB to ease the effects of the pandemic.
Adesina assured of the bank’s readiness to support African countries, financial institutions and the private sector to accelerate Africa’s economic growth.