It is pertinent for one to leave an indelible and unforgettable mark for everyone to admire whenever one is retiring from an institution, most especially a corporate entity like a bank. However, this indelible mark takes a lot of hard work, consistency, diligence, loyalty and above all prudence. Today, in Nigeria, there has been news about some banking executives who were disgraced out of office due to their financial misappropriation and mismanagement.
Many of these individuals toyed on the finances entrusted on them by their customers while some of them lavished the finances as if the money belongs to them. This tells us that there are two categories of banking executives, one the reliable ones and two the unreliable ones.
However, the outgoing Managing Director of Fidelity Bank Plc, Nnamdi Okonkwo falls in the first category, the reliable banking executives. This shrewd banker is indeed leaving a very large vacuum to be filled by the incoming head honcho of Fidelity Bank, Mrs. Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe, an Executive Director of the bank. There is no doubting the fact that since he took over the leadership of the bank on the 2nd of January 2014, it has been one tale of progressiveness and success or the other. Okonkwo has indeed taken the pedigree of Fidelity Bank to an enviable level and to the great admiration of the board of directors and shareholders of the bank.
Okonkwo, who holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Agricultural Economics is a man of deep knowledge about the Nigerian and global banking systems. He ensured that for six years, the financial status of customers of Fidelity Bank improved by safeguarding their hard earned finances jealously.
Right from his days as the Executive Director of South Directorate at Fidelity Bank, Nnamdi Okonkwo has disseminated the positive spirit of a prudent banker and an astute financial expert. Okonkwo has professionally and diligently worked as the Executive Director of Commercial and Consumer Banking South Directorate. He came on board Fidelity Bank after working as the Chief Operating Officer in the Ghana subsidiary of the United Bank of Africa (UBA).
Okonkwo attended the prestigious University of Benin where he bagged the aforementioned B.Sc in Agricultural Economics. He also had an MBA, Banking and Finance from the Enugu State University of Science and Technology. Nnamdi Okonkwo is also a graduate of the Advanced Management Program (AMP) of INSEAD, the business school of the world, France.
Nnamdi John Okonkwo commenced his banking career in the financial services industry in 1990 at Merchant Bank of Africa, Nigeria. In 1993, he moved to Guarantee Trust Bank (GTBank) and rose to become a branch manager before moving on to other banks.
Mr. Okonkwo then worked with other financial institutions before he joined United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc. While at UBA, he held various managerial and leadership positions. He was once Regional Bank Head in Lagos; Regional Director, Federal Capital, Nigeria; Project Director, and Head of Corporate Banking and Multinational Corporate Division; Managing Director/CEO of UBA Ghana; and finally, Regional CEO of the bank’s West Africa Monetary Zone covering Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone.
In 2012, Nnamdi Okonkwo left UBA and joined Fidelity Bank Plc., Nigeria. He joined as the Executive Director in charge of the Bank’s businesses in Southern Nigeria. He was tasked with the responsibility of overseeing the bank’s entire business across Southern Nigeria excluding Lagos and other Western states. Nnamdi Okonkwo held the Executive Director position until January 1, 2014 when he was appointed the Managing Director/CEO of Fidelity Bank. As the Managing Director, he oversees the bank’s general activities.
With over 30 years of banking experience, Okonkwo is a formidable figure and force who is blessed with a blazing trial of achievements. He captained Fidelity Bank to win several awards of recognition and excellence. One of the most recognizable awards won by the bank include a top place on the list of Nigerian banks that provided the best services for customer satisfaction in 2017. Definitely, Okonkwo deserves great accolades, praises, honours and respects as he prepare to gallantly step down as the engine room of Fidelity Bank Plc.
He has been the symbol of Fidelity Bank’s unstoppable momentum and force. His time at the bank will be considered a period of explosion of assets and shareholders’ equity, customer growth, digital innovation and all-round development. A man of valour, a man of dignity, a man of class and panache, Nnamdi John Okonkwo surely has a bigger role to play in the Nigerian financial industry now and in the nearest future even as he bid farewell to the staff, management and board of Fidelity Bank Plc.