Dangote, Dapo Abiodun, others don’t call me again – Cecilia Ibru
As the former Chief Executive Officer of defunct Oceanic Bank, Mrs Cecilia Ibru, tries to consolidate her forage into the education sector, she has reflected on the contributions the bank made in the business sector but said major beneficiaries of its interventions had more or less abandoned her.
According to her, those who used to be close to her, including the President of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, do not call her on the phone again.
She said in an interview with ‘Saturday Punch’ that she had, however, moved on.
Asked if she was still in touch with them, she said, “Yes, though they don’t call me; whether there is nothing to discuss, but I call them when I want to. To be frank with you, I would say nothing. I did everything with my whole heart. I genuinely wanted to help people grow their businesses and a lot of people and businesses were empowered. We floated Econet, Oando, we built MMA2, Iba Expressway, we put guarantee down to build Toll Gate and the project at the Bar Beach. So, we did a lot under public-private partnership and I enjoyed it because I knew that if there were about three to four banks was after we had finished that we began to sell the credit to other banks; the same with Econet, MMA2 and others. I enjoyed it all because we created real and sustainable value because those businesses are still there till today. Looking at individuals that also benefited from the bank, we assisted doing what we were doing at that time, Nigeria would have been industrialised by now. Look at Dangote at Obajana, we did (funded) it, and it people like Dapo Abiodun, Jimoh Ibrahim, (Aliko) Dangote, etc.
“Of course, but that is their opinion, it has nothing to do with me. Your opinion cannot affect the person that I am. When such happens, some people tend to become distant because of that and I say maybe you probably didn’t need those friends anyway. I know that God uses things like this to show you the friends you need and those you don’t need. Just do what God wants you to do, try and live a holy life and study the Bible so you are continuously redefined. If it were not for God, I wouldn’t be sitting with you for this interview and I probably wouldn’t come across you. It was tough and I don’t wish it for anybody.”