The South African telecommunications giant, MTN Group, has announced the appointment of His Royal Highness, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, Emir of Kano to its Board of Directors effective July 2019. Sanusi is a former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria from 2009 to 2014, during which he was named as one of the 100 most influential people in the world (2011) by TIME magazine, and was voted the Central Bank Governor of the Year by the Banker Magazine.
Welcoming him and other new Directors to the Board, outgoing MTN Group Chairman Phuthuma Nhleko said: “We are confident that the incoming directors of the Board will bring a wealth of experience, depth of skills and regional insights that will continue to enrich the experience of the board.”
The Group in a statement issued on Friday also announced the establishment of an international advisory board (IAB) of prominent persons of considerable and wide-ranging experience.
The primary purpose of the IAB, the Group said, would be to counsel, guide and support the MTN Group from time to time in fulfilling its vision and objective of being one of the premier African corporations with a global footprint in telecommunications, contributing to increased digital inclusion in Africa and the Middle East, a pivotal aspect of the fourth industrial revolution.
“Whilst the IAB will be non-statutory in nature and not have any fiduciary responsibility, it will make an important contribution and play a highly valued role in ensuring that the Board is guided and assisted in achieving the company’s vision in a technically complex world with uncertain and shifting geopolitical interests. The IAB will commence on 1 July 2019”.
“The six member board will be chaired by former South African president, Thabo Mbeki, and includes Dr Aisha Abdullahi from Nigeria. She is a former African Union Commissioner for Political Affairs and former Nigerian Ambassador to the Republic of Guinea. A Fellow of the Chemical Society of Nigeria, Dr Abdullahi holds a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU), Bauchi” the statement read.
Announcing some other changes in the Board, the Group noted that the Chairman, Phuthuma Nhleko, who was anticipated to step down from his position at the AGM to be held on 23 May 2019, will step down from the Board on 15 December 2019 after overseeing an orderly transition of the Board including the establishment of the International Advisory Board.
“Mcebisi Jonas has been appointed Chairman-designate and will assume the position of Chairman of MTN Group effective 15 December 2019. Dr. Khotso Mokhele will assume the responsibilities of Lead Independent Director with effect from 15 December 2019. Further, Alan Harper, Jeff Van Rooyen and Koosum Kaylan will step down from the Board on 15 Dec 2019 after an orderly transition and handover to incoming directors. Peter Mageza and Dawn Marole will step down from the Board effective 30 April 2020,” the Group stated.