Tinubu names Olayemi Cardoso, Ex-CitiBanker as CBN governor, Dattijo, Usoro others deputies

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Nigeria’s President Bola Tinubu has approved the nomination of Olayemi Michael Cardoso to serve as the new governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, for a term of five years at the first instance, pending his confirmation by the Nigerian Senate.

According to a statement by President Tinubu’s spokesman, Ajuri Ngelale, the directive is in conformity with Section 8 (1) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act, 2007, which vests in the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the authority to appoint the governor and four deputy governors for the CBN, subject to confirmation by the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Furthermore, President Bola Tinubu has approved the nomination of four new deputy governors of the CBN, for a term of five years at the first instance, pending their confirmation by the Nigerian Senate, as follows: (1) Mrs. Emem Nnana Usoro, (2) Mr. Muhammad Sani Abdullahi Dattijo, (3) Mr. Philip Ikeazor, (4) Dr. Bala M. Bello.

The release added that the appointment is made in line with President Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope agenda, and that the President expects the above named nominees to successfully implement critical reforms at the Central Bank of Nigeria, to enhance the confidence of Nigerians and international partners in the restructuring of the Nigerian economy toward sustainable growth and prosperity for all.

Cardoso was at various times Chairman of CITIBANK and also served as Commissioner for Budget and National Planning when Tinubu was Governor of Lagos State,1999 to 2007.

He takes over from Godwin Emefiele, who has been on suspension as CBN Governor since June 9, 2023.

Profiles of the new nominees:


He studied managerial and administrative studies at Aston University, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) degree. He holds a Master’s degree from the Harvard Kennedy School in public administration.

He is a member of the Cities Alliance’s Africa Think Tank Group, a group created to solve urban development challenges.

Cardoso has served as a board member of MRS Oil and was the chairman of the board of EFinA. He is a member of the advisory board of Lagos Business School and chairman of the board of African Venture Philanthropy Alliance.

The new CBN governor is the founding chairman and co-chair of Ehingbeti Summit, the Lagos State economic summit. He is also a former executive lead at Harvard Kennedy School alumni association.

Emem Usoro and other CBN deputies


An alumna of Harvard Business School and Lagos Business School, Usoro’s banking career spans over 20 years with experience in Operations, Credit and Marketing, Branch Management, Relationship Management, Corporate and Commercial Banking. Until her appointment, she was UBA’s Group General Manager and the Strategic Business Group (SBG) Head, in Abuja. She was also the Regional Head, Lagos Bank 2. Usoro has won multiple awards at the annual UBA CEO Awards.


Philip Ikeazor has over 30 years’ experience in the financial services industry. He holds a BSc. Economics from the University of Buckingham, UK. He is also an Alumnus of Wharton-CEIBS-IESE Business School Global CEO Programme and attended executive programmes at Harvard Business School and Wharton School of Business.

Ikeazor has held various board positions, notably as the CEO of Keystone Bank Limited, CEO of Ecobank Kenya Limited, Executive Director, Union Bank Nigeria, Director of Union Bank UK PLC, and Director of the Orient Bank Uganda. Philip also served as a member of the governing board of ICRISAT –International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics, India (a member of the World Bank-led Consultative Group on International Agric. Research).

He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, Fellow Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria.


A native of Taraba State, Dr. Bala Mohammed Bello is an industry leader, whose career has spanned Banking, Capital Markets, and Pension Fund Management:

Bello is a well-respected public official and a renowned accountant. In April 2017, Bello was appointed by former President Muhammadu Buhari as the Executive Director of Corporate Services at the Nigerian Export-Import Bank

Bello has an excellent performance record brimming with excellence. He is well known for surpassing his competition to achieve the greatest level of success in his field.


Abdullahi is an international development expert who served as a policy adviser at the Executive Office of United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon in New York and also as Commissioner for Budget and Planning in Kaduna State.

He obtained his Master’s degree in Development Economics and Policy from the University of Manchester and obtained a second Master’s from Ahmadu Bello University where he studied International Affairs and Diplomacy. Abdullahi obtained certificates including in Public Finance at the London School of Economics; Sustainable Development at Columbia University and Advanced Project Management at Oxford University.

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