Executive director, investment banking and subsidiaries at NOVA Merchant Bank, Funke Okoya, has been appointed chairperson, Women’s Empowerment Commission of the Women in Finance Nigeria (WIFNG), a platform for advocacy, development and networking of women in the financial sector.
Okoya’s appointment in the non-profit organisation was announced along with four other new executives at a recent signing of the international partnership/affiliation with the Women Working for Change, an organ of the African CEO Forum and the largest international forum of the African private sector.
The newly appointed exco members were selected from committed senior executive members of the organisation and have been charged with the specific duty of chairing the association’s five new commissions.
The organisation described Okoya’s new role as chairperson as a major push for the capacity development of women in Nigeria. It is also expected to drive initiatives that advance women’s cause, pursuit of financial literacy and inclusion for women while promoting gender parity.
“We are very excited about the launch of these important commissions under the leadership of these dynamic senior executives as well as the election of our new national secretary all of whom served creditably, over time, at WIFNG,” Toyin Sanni, chairperson, Women in Finance Nigeria, said.
Okoya, who expressed excitement over the new development, said it is designed to speak to the yearnings of women in Nigeria and further enrich the conversation around capacity building, provide access to finance, broaden value realization, add relevance, recognition and network for women.
She added that the expanded executive committee demonstrates the association’s commitment to supporting women across the country by providing leadership and sustainable professional development for women through creative coalitions and partnerships with international women organisations like Women Working for Change.
Congratulating Okoya on her appointment, Phillips Oduoza, chairman of NOVA Merchant Bank, said she (Okoya) has been at the forefront of gender diversity, sustainability and female inclusion.
“As a board, we are glad for the recognition which will elevate the commission to the next level under her chairmanship,” Oduoza said.
Women in Finance Nigeria was registered in 2016 to provide policy advocacy for greater representation of women in the financial sector and in financial roles in public and private sector organizations. In 2019, it established and registered its UK Chapter, WIFNG UK, a vibrant body for African women working in the United Kingdom’s financial services sector.
The organisation advocates for positive economic policies and is a platform for women in financial roles to collectively tackle workplace and societal challenges affecting women. It also provides capacity building, networking and economic empowerment opportunities.