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Help change fortunes of banking sector - ARB Apex Bank MD to women

BY: Elizabeth Nyaadu Adu
 Alex Akwasi Awuah (4th from left) MD, ARB Apex Bank; Patricia Sappor (5th from left),Past President of CIB; Comfort Owusu (4th from right), Executive Director, ARB Apex Bank, and the execitve of the association after the launch
Alex Akwasi Awuah (4th from left) MD, ARB Apex Bank; Patricia Sappor (5th from left),Past President of CIB; Comfort Owusu (4th from right), Executive Director, ARB Apex Bank, and the execitve of the association after the launch

The Managing Director of ARB Apex Bank, Alex Akwasi Awuah, has asked women to be more involved in changing the fortunes of the banking sector.

Those within the industry have also been urged to exhibit their prowess and help take the industry to the next level.

Mr Awuah made the call at the inauguration of the ARB Apex Bank Ladies Association in Accra at the weekend. The event was on the theme: ‘Building a Progressive and United Front: Ladies United For Programme’.

The call comes at a time when the percentage of women at the helm of affairs within the industry is said to be below expectation.

For instance, less than 10 of the 146 Rural and Community Banks (RCBs) in the country are led by female Chief Executive Officers.

Mr Awuah said it was an undeniable fact that women’s representation in the banking industry has not been encouraging over the years, a development which needs to change going forward.

Mr Awuah said the bank was aware of the enormous capacity and potentials that ladies are endowed with and expressed the hope that more women will take up higher roles.

“From today, the ARB Apex Bank Ladies’ Association would go down in history as a pacesetter female professionals club and it is my expectation that the ladies would be deliberate in their organisation and decision making to position the association as a reference point for professional female lobby groups in the country,” he stated.

Aspire to greater heights

The immediate-past president of the Chartered Institute of Bankers (CIB) Ghana, Patricia Sappor, on her part challenged women to aspire to the top and prove their capabilities and worth in any organisation they find themselves in.

Consequently, she has, therefore, urged women to explore and understand the requirements of their career progression and work meticulously towards that.

“The era of women taking the back seat in leadership due to gender ascribed challenges is far gone. A lot of opportunities are now available for women to positively impact their generation in all capacities,” she said.

Mentorship

Mrs Sappor said “to break the glass ceiling”, women need to avail themselves to be trained by taking advantage of capacity building programmes.

“Women must engage in mentorship programmes organised by successful women and women in leadership serving as role models to the younger ones.

There are limitless opportunities for women. Position yourself and make yourself visible,” she said.

Break silence, disunity

The president of the ARB Apex Bank Association, Iris Obeng-Tuudah, said the silence on disunity among women has to be broken now to shatter an illusion of the narrative about women being their own enemies.

Ms Tuuda urged all the members of the association to stay united and channel their strengths in encouraging each other to make it to the top.

She also appealed to the board and management of the bank to consider giving priority to qualified women in filling vacant positions within the bank to help support the career progression of female staff.