It is my pleasure to welcome you to this send-forth dinner in honour of the former Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Corporation, Mr G A Ogunleye, OFR, and the former Executive Director (Operations), Professor Peter N. Umoh. At this juncture I must apologise for the delay in organising this programme which had been long overdue. The delay was not deliberate as it was due to circumstances beyond our control and which was well known to the two fine gentlemen that we are gathered to honour here tonight.
We are actually gathered here tonight to send forth two great men who have contributed immensely to the growth and development of Deposit Insurance System (DIS) not only in Nigeria but also in Africa as a whole. No doubt, the Corporation had evolved into a highly robust, responsible and reputable organisation due to the contributions and selfless service of these two admirable gentlemen who helped to pilot the affairs of the Corporation for a decade before they retired.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, at this juncture let me also acknowledge the contributions of the pioneer Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer(CEO) of the Corporation, Chief John U. Ebhodaghe, OFR, of blessed memory. We shall continue to build on and consolidate the solid foundation Mr. Ebhodaghe laid. May the Almighty God grant him eternal rest.
Ladies and gentlemen, as one who worked closely with these gentlemen, let me crave your indulgence to mention a few of the achievements recorded during their tenure. Worthy of mention is the amendment of the enabling Act of NDIC, which has removed some of the legal bottlenecks that had previously constrained the Corporation from effectively discharging its statutory mandate. These committed gentlemen worked tireless, often times late in the night, dialoguing, discussing, strategising with relevant stakeholders before the Act could be amended.
Furthermore, working in collaboration with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), they ensured that the Corporation played a crucial role during the banking sector consolidation programme in 2005. As a matter of fact, through the novel Failure Resolution Strategy of Purchase & Assumption (P&A), which the CBN and NDIC adopted to resolve the problems of banks that could not consolidate, no private sector depositor lost his or her money in those banks. I am proud to state that these gentlemen were part of the team that recommended the adoption of that failure resolution option.
Distinguished guests, it is also necessary to observe that these gentlemen worked like true professionals during their tenure in the Corporation. This is clearly evidenced by the fact that during their tenure in office, the Board and Management of NDIC never suffered from irreconcilable differences that had contributed to the demise of many organizations both within and outside the shores of Nigeria.
On behalf of the staff, Management and Board of the Corporation, I wish to assure you, Alhaji Ogunleye and Prof. Umoh, that we will uphold the tenets of peaceful, innovative and harmonious working relationship you so passionately believed in.
It is common knowledge in the nation’s financial services industry that NDIC staff are well noted for their high reputation, dedication to duty, adherence to professional ethics, transparency and accountability. For promoting a veritable corporate culture where these virtues could flourish, we owe a lot of gratitude to these two fine gentlemen that we are gathered here to honour tonight.
Once again, the Board, Management and entire staff of the Corporation are highly appreciative of the selfless service and immense contributions of these past executives we are honouring tonight. While we wish you all peaceful retirement and God’s guidance in your future endeavours, let me say that the Corporation will continue to count on your support.
I thank you all for your attention and have a good evening.