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Succession Tussle Hits Access Bank, As Aig-Imoukhuede Retires

By on April 15, 2013

A succession tussle over who takes over the helms of affairs when the current Group Managing Director, Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, retires at the end of this year, is currently brewing at Access Bank Plc.

Aig-Imoukhuede had told shareholders last year that he would retire from the bank in December 2013. His retirement is in line with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)’s minimum 10-year tenure given to chief executive officers of banks.

Investigations revealed that efforts to leave behind a ‘tidy house’ was the cause of conflicts of interests at the bank as Imoukhuede is said to have withdrawn his support for long time partner- and Deputy Managing Director of the bank, Mr Hubert Wigwe, who was previously believed would take over from Imoukhuede.

Insider sources who spoke in confidence, said that the GMD now favors Angela Omokore, the wife of his close ally in the corridors of power and front man of Spog Oil, Mr Jide Omokore over Wigwe, his long standing partner.

Angela who is also regarded as a major player at Access Bank was said to be a visible part of power brokers in the bank until she travelled abroad for childbirth. She returned to head the Ghana arm of the bank’s operation and maintained ‘a very low profile’ since then.

Outside of her influence within the financial institution, sources confirmed Angela’s hubby, Jide Omokore’s relationship with Imoukhuede and volume of business he transacts with Access Bank are major factors propelling the move pitching his wife to succeed the incumbent.

Mr Omokore is a big time player in the government of President Jonathan, particularly the Oil Sector.

Along with fellow promoters of another business concern, Seven Energy, Omokore is believed to be the business front and channel of commercial activities for Petroleum Minister, Allison Madueke and other shrouded government functionaries.

Insiders claim that AImoukhuede has eyes on leveraging on Mr Omokore’s status for himself and his bank, by positioning Angela as his successor – at the cost of sacrificing the ambition of deputy and long term associate, Wigwe, who insiders claimed has limited influence and contact, despite his expertise and long association on the job-

However, sources revealed that Mr Wigwe was not taking the looming development lying low.

Sources claimed that he is currently calling in all support he can muster-within and outside- the bank to forestall the move, and the divided interest between the managing director and the deputy managing director have started polarising the management team, and causing cracks within the organisation’s structure. Those in the know claime that at present, with his joint influence with Omokaro at play-there is every likelihood that Imoukhuede will get away with fostering Angela on the bank leadership when the time comes.