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Protesters Ask Buhari To Sack 'Apostle of Corruption' Joseph Nnana As NEXIM Bank Boss

The protesters, under the aegis of the Awareness For Good Governance Group (AGGG), accused Nnana, a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), of masterminding some corrupt and fraudulent activities going on in the bank.

Hundreds of protesters on Monday besieged the gate of the presidential villa to demand the immediate removal of Dr Joseph Nnana, Chairman of the board of NEXIM Bank, over allegations of corruption.

The protesters, under the aegis of the Awareness For Good Governance Group (AGGG), accused Nnana, a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), of masterminding some corrupt and fraudulent activities going on in the bank.

Convener of the group, Princess Ajibola, said: "We observed with stark dismay the recent dubious engagements of one Dr Joseph Nnana, a former Deputy Governor (Economic Policies) at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) who was appointed barely one year ago to serve as the board Chairman of NEXIM.

"We regret to publicly announce the fraudulent and nepotistic crave of Dr Nnana, who has soiled his already filthy hands with cans of worms without traces of professional approach and has proven to the world that he is not fit to occupy any public office; not even a treasurer of any hamlet developmental union much less of a reputed public treasury like NEXIM Bank.

She said as a group, the Awareness For Good Governance platform is a formidable front with the sole interest of encouraging good leadership style in the public and financial sector of the economy. 

"We all know our beloved country is rated among the third-world countries. However, our developmental stride is not limited because Nigeria under the pragmatic leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari accords zero tolerance to corruption. 

"As an unrepentant apostle of corruption, the said Nnana who is unqualified to occupy the position of the organization's chairmanship is personalizing the affairs of the bank by allowing his emotions to take the lead while he steers activities of the bank to the murky waters of frustration, looting and scandals. 

"Furthermore, our group noted the latest scheming of Dr Nnana and his cabals by illegitimately recommending and approving mass sack of staff of the bank perceived to opposed his corrupt minded posture, abuse of public office and lack of due process in his self-seeking and serving interest as an dictator without focus.

"The ongoing mass sack through threats and intimidation by Nnana is to allow him, his cronies and allies, mostly from his state of origin, amass illegitimate public fund at the expense of the formerly standard but now crippling organization under the watch of corrupt stenched-filled Nnanna.

"AGGG further gathered that Dr Nnana's latest hobby is the comic act of threatening to use the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to witch-hunt many of his staff who are contributing their best quota towards the development of the establishment. 

"We want to equally caution the EFCC and the entirety of its hierarchy to desist from allowing the fake helmsman of a revered organization to use them for shaming purposes without proper investigation. 

"In effect, we are tasking the EFCCC to investigate Dr Nnana's role when he served a Board Member in Nigeria's apex bank before his appointment as Chairman, NEXIM bank.”

However, responding in a statement emailed to SaharaReporters, the management of the bank claimed Nnanna had done no wrong. 

"Our attention has been drawn to the news circulating online indicating that some protesters under the aegis of the so-called and faceless 'Awareness for Good Governance Group' (AGGG) besieged the presidential villa gate on Monday, 29th April, 2019, and called for the immediate removal of the Chairman of NEXIM Bank over involvement in corruption and fraudulent activities going on in the Bank," read the statement.

"The Management of NEXIM Bank wishes to state categorically that these allegations are not only false and misleading, but a mischievous attempt at tarnishing the good reputation of Dr. Joseph Nnanna, and divert attention from aongoing efforts by the Board to address a case of gross mismanagement and poor state of affairs of the bank under the old management, which had since been sacked by the government of President Muhammadu Buhari.

"Prior to the appointment of a new Management for NEXIM in April, 2017, the bank had become almost insolvent with huge non-performing loans, exacerbated by gross abuse of process, insider-related loans and lack of professionalism in loan administration, amongst other issues. This led the bank to commission a forensic audit to establish the true state of affairs before the new management came on board. 

"It is pertinent to add that two years after the new management was appointed, the fortune of the bank has changed remarkably for the better, under Dr. Nnanna-led Board with significant improvement in key prudential ratios. The bank is honouring its obligations and is collaborating with the Central Bank of Nigeria to manage two intervention funds, amounting to N550bn, towards increased support to the non-oil export sector.

"NEXIM wishes to state that Dr. Joseph Nnanna, a thorough-bred professional and former staff of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is currently the Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and was appointed Chairman of the board of Directors of NEXIM Bank in March, 2018.  He has since then worked harmoniously with other board members to reposition the bank to deliver on its mandate and contribute towards achieving the economic diversification strategy of the Federal Government of Nigeria under the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan. Members of the print and electronic media are hereby advised to verify all information relating to the institution and its stakeholders before going to press."