The board of directors of the United Bank for Africa(UBA), Africa’s global bank, has announced the appointment of Abiola Bawuah, a Ghanaian national, as its first female chief executive officer of UBA Africa.

According to the notice sent to the Nigerian Exchange Group, Bawuah will also join the group board as an executive director, overseeing the group’s operations across the African continent, outside Nigeria.

Her appointment takes the number of female directors within the UBA group to eight, further demonstrating the importance the bank attaches to diversity and gender equality in its workplace,

Prior to her recent appointment, Bawuah was the regional CEO, West Africa, supervising the group’s operations in nine subsidiaries in Benin Republic, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Senegal, and Sierra Leone. She was the CEO of UBA Ghana.

Tony Elumelu, UBA group’s chairman, attributed the appointment of Bawuah to her wealth of experience which she is expected to bring to bear in her new appointment.

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He said: “Abiola has contributed significantly to the growth of UBA Africa for close to a decade. She brings a wealth of experience in commercial banking, and stakeholder engagement. It also gives me great pleasure that with her appointment, the UBA Group Board has now become a majority female board.”

Other appointments made by UBA include Chris Ofikulu who is now the Regional CEO, UBA West Africa; Uzoechina Molokwu who will take on the role as Deputy Managing Director (DMD) of UBA Ghana; Ayokunle Olajubu will be the Managing Director/CEO UBA Liberia and Theresa Henshaw has been appointed as CEO of UBA UK.

Others are Usman Isiaka, currently CEO, UBA Sierra Leone, will be the Deputy CEO in UBA America; Adeyemi Adeleke, the former CEO of UBA, UK is now the Group Treasurer, as well as the retirement of High Chief Samuel Oni, an independent non-executive Director, from the board following the expiration of his tenure. He joined the UBA Group in January 2015 and served on the Board of the Group for eight years.

UBA operates in twenty African countries and in the United Kingdom, the United States of America, France and the United Arab Emirates, United Bank for Africa provides retail, commercial and institutional banking services, leading financial inclusion and implementing cutting edge technology. UBA is one of the largest employers in the financial sector on the African continent, with 25,000 employees’ group wide and serving over 37 million customers globally.

Bawuah holds a BSc in Actuarial Science from the University of Lagos, Nigeria, an LLB from the University of London, a diploma in Marketing from GIMPA and EMBA (Finance) from the University of Ghana. She also has numerous leadership qualifications from Harvard Business School, Columbia, University of New York, INSEAD and Institut Villa Pierrefeu in Switzerland.