Liberia Bankers Association Honors Former President John Davis for ‘Exceptional’ Leadership ￼
Monrovia – It was a moment of pride and a sense of fulfillment when the Liberia Bankers Association (LBA) honored its immediate past president, John B. S. Davies.
Mr. Davies served as president of the LBA for the past eight years, while also serving as the president and Chief Executive Officer of the Liberia Bank for Development and Investment (LBDI).
The LBA represents the interests of banking institutions in Liberia. At a colorful event in Monrovia which also included the installation of the new leadership, the newly inducted president of LBA, George Mensah-Asante thanked Mr. Davies for his selfless service to the association during his tenure and pledged to build on the good work as he takes over the leadership of the association.
“I would like to thank my former LBA president, John B.S. Davies, III, for all the support and dedication for setting up the LBA to reach this level. I want to assure you that we will continue to push and move it to even high level,” said Mr. Mensah-Asante, also the president and CEO of Ecobank Liberia Limited.
In his appreciation speech, Mr. Davies lauded the LBA for the honor and thanked all those who worked with him to make significant stride in the banking sector over the past eight years.
In his recollection, Mr. Davis said when he took over LBA, the banking sector was grappling with several challenges, but with the support of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), colleagues and partners, some of these problems have been addressed.
‘No one in the industry really knew let alone understood what mobile money was. Integration of the banks was restricted to presentation and clearing of checks manually at the clearing house. Two banks accounted for over 65 percent of all banking business in the country. Naming and shaming was not even a thought for consideration, banking syndication and club deals were myths and exclusivity in diaspora type remittances was the order of the day,” he recounted.
He named the modernization of processes and operating platforms, fostering unity within the sector, sustained engagements with the CBL and the government as some of the gains made during his tenure.
He recounted that the LBA has made some significant strides and supported successive Executive Governors and the Board of Governors in accomplishing some of the CBL’s laudable milestones.
He named the LBA’s input in the conclusion of over 50 prudential regulations, the implementation of the financial sector Development Implementation Plan, the first and second amendments of the CBL Act, the maiden edition of the Collateral Registry and the establishment of the commercial court, the national payment system Part 1 and currently Part 2 which have led to RTGs and ACH system have all witnessed the LBA efforts at providing insights to the CBL.
Additionally, he noted that club deals commencing with the initial LoneStar MTN syndication, the government’s million special bonds which were ultimately rolled into GOL’s long term bonds are testimonial of some of the proudest moments of strategic cooperation agreement with the Charter Institute of Bankers of Nigeria which have made it possible for licensure exams to be made available to Liberia Banks’ staff and potential managers were all made possible with the collaboration of the CBL, and the GOL.
“It is my fervent wish and prayer that the small seed which were sowed during our tenure and have germinated will grow to even bigger trees with beautiful branches on which more mainstream financial institutions can blossom and our economy expand,” he said.
He thanked current and past Governors of the CBL and the Government of Liberia for creating a smooth environment for the sector to thrive.
The event was attended by major stakeholders within the banking sector including CBL current and past Governors, president and CEO of commercial banks and officials of the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP).
Former CBL Executive Governor Milton Weeks and Board member David Farhat paid homage to the former LBA’s president.
Mr. Davies also served as president of the West Africa Bankers Association (WABA) for two consecutive terms before stepping down in 2021 at the end of his final tenure.
The President of WABA, Thierno Seydou Nourou Sy and several bank’s executives across West Africa paid their tribute to the former Davies.