National Bank CEO finally oust himself

National Bank of Kenya’s Managing Director, Munir Sheikh Ahmed who has been placed on a compulsory leave, has decided to finally to end his career with the bank.

Mr. Ahmed who was engaged in a exclusive interview on Friday April 22, revealed that he left the bank on April 13, a fortnight after he was suspended alongside five other senior executives pending an internal audit.

The CEO was compulsorily sent home on the eve of the Bank’s announcement of a surprise net loss of Sh1.15 billion for the period to December 2015, from a net profit of Sh2.25 billion in the nine months ended September 2015.

Mr Ahmed, who feels the banks decision to place him on a compulsory leave was an indirect means of sacking him, said heshe shouldnt be blamed for the bank’s non-performing loan portfolio.

According to him, all the loans given at his time were approved by NBK board’s credit committee, which was responsible for the review of the quality and performance of the credit portfolio.

“I’ve exited. It was a sack. Suspension was a nice way of putting it,” he said.

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The former CEO went on to list some of his achievements as the leader of the NBK as product diversification, cutting expenses to improve the bank’s cost income ratio, balance sheet growth and use of technology to improve operations.

Meanwhile, NBK declined to comment on this issue neither did the listed lender confirm the exit of Mr Ahmed by the time of going to press.

The bank, which made an after-tax profit of Sh871 million in 2014, blamed the record loss on a mounting volume of bad loans, for which it pointed the finger at its senior managers.

Mr. Ahmed and five other managers were directed by the National Bank’s board of directors on March 29, to “immediately proceed on leave but will be expected to comply and make key submissions to the internal audit process”.

“The CBK welcomes these timely actions to strengthen the NBK, while maintaining smooth operations, and that will protect the financial system,” said Governor Patrick Njoroge in a statement following the board decision.

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Mr. Ahmed went ahead to present himself on April 11 to the Department of Criminal Investigations to record a statement on the happenings at the NBK.

He took over as the managing director of National Bank of Kenya on August 1, 2012,hence becoming the first boss of the majority State-owned lender to be competitively recruited.