The controversy that has trailed the management of Sterling Bank, especially after the huge flop made by the Corporate Communications unit of the bank with the approval of the Managing Director, Mr. Abubakar Suleiman, who seem not in tune with goings around the bank has really put them up for public ridicule and disgrace, especially with the call by the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN for him to resigned, coupled with the alleged sanction by the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria, APCON.
According to a recent report, it has become evident that the leadership of the bank under Abubakar Suleiman is not up to par, and there are a number of incidences that back this up, with the 48-year-old Nigerian banker and acclaimed economic professional, whose leadership has seen Sterling Bank’s finances wither away, is currently fighting to keep his job as more concerned individuals, corporate bodies, religious leaders, and organizations demand that he be removed as MD following the bank’s latest blunder, an Easter advertorial days ago..
Sterling Bank, headed by Abubakar Suleiman who is the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, ran an Easter advertisement that inadvertently compared Jesus Christ’s resurrection to Agege Bread’s rising, even as people say that the advert had Sterling Bank comparing Agege Bread to Jesus Christ rising from the dead on Esther day.
In the advertisement, the bank had written “Like Agege Bread, He Rose,” referring to Jesus Christ’ historical resurrection. Many thought Sterling Bank should have known better with a Chief Executive Officer who is a Muslim, a religion which would never have tolerated if their religious leader, which Jesus Christ wasn’t anyways, if compared with Agege Bread the way and manner Sterling Bank did with that very advert.
Of course, the advertorial, which has been regarded as a premeditated display of insensitivity and rascality on Sterling Bank’s side, did not sit well with many Nigerians, both at home and abroad, who are now angry and asking for a boycott of the struggling lender, even as many people are perplexed as to how a supposedly corporate entity like Sterling Bank could be complicit in such a horrible conduct capable of inciting tension between one religious group over another, while others opined that it borders on poor leadership on the part of the Managing Director, Abubakar Suleiman, who till today, seem not to know exactly what to do with the financial institution..
Nigeria is a volatile society and every spark that looks like a slight against one religious belief or another heralds the beginning of a ‘hurricane’, especially across social media platforms, but due to a faulty leadership, Sterling Bank whether deliberately or by error failed to harness a season such as Easter to promote, but to bring its brand to disrepute, which had had the former Executive Chairman of the AG Leventis Plc, Chief JB Oke speak, asking the Managing Director of Sterling Bank, Abubakar Suleiman to resign or step down, whichever way, but that would be after putting up apologies in atleast, 10 national newspapers and through the platforms used by the bank to ridicule Christianity on Esther Sunday.
Chief JB Oke says. “I hope the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN will pursue this Sterling Bank case to a logical conclusion. On my part, I have commenced a campaign to stop Christians using a Jihadist Bank, as Our College is also planning its own strategy.