EXCLUSIVE: Tinubu Pencils Down Indicted Former NEXIM Bank Director, Okotete, For Appointment


President Bola Tinubu has pencilled down the embattled former Executive Director (Business Development) at the Nigeria Export-Import (NEXIM) Bank, Stella Okotete, for the position of Managing Director of the bank, SaharaReporters has learnt.

Sources at the Presidency told SaharaReporters that Okotete’s name is in a list of appointees to be announced soon.

According to sources, she will be appointed as the Managing Director of NEXIM Bank.

In 2019, the Nigerian Senate recommended the resignation or sacking of Okotete as Executive Director (Business Development) at the NEXIM Bank, over fraudulent misrepresentation regarding her qualifications but three years after the recommendation by the lawmakers, Okotete was re-appointed by then-President Muhammadu Buhari for another term of five (5) years in office.

NEXIM is an export credit agency in Nigeria, established in 1991.

In its function, NEXIM focuses on the development and expansion of the non-oil sectors of the Nigerian economy, to reduce the country’s over-reliance on oil exports.

In a report by the Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, it was revealed that Okotete had fraudulently misrepresented her qualification to hold the post of Executive Director at the bank even as she did not have 15 years of post-graduation experience required to occupy such high office as specified by the Central Bank of Nigeria circular of October 15, 2015, and 13 of which must be in active banking service and two of such years as General Manager.

“Following from the above observation, the Committee wishes to recommend as follows: that since Stella Okotete didn’t meet the 18 years post-graduation qualification requirement to assume office as Executive Director at NEXIM or any other Bank for that matter, she be directed to vacate that office with immediate effect,” the report by the committee read.

SaharaReporters learnt that despite the recommendation, some power brokers ensured that the report was swept under the carpet.

“She was even included in Tinubu and All Progressives Congress’ presidential campaign council,” another source added.

The resume of Okotete obtained by SaharaReporters revealed that she was not qualified for the position.


“A minimum of first degree or its equivalent in any discipline plus a higher degree or professional qualification in any business-related discipline.

“Candidates must also have a minimum of 18 years post-graduation experience, out of which at least 13 must be in the banking industry and at least 2 as General Manager. Evidence of experience in several areas of banking operations including business development and customer services management.” the document had read.

It was revealed that Okotete also did not have any experience in the banking industry as required by the law.

SaharaReporters in 2023 reported that some top Nigerian lawyers wrote to the 10th Senate, demanding the immediate disqualification of Okotete.

The lawyers from Juryman Associate Chambers are Aare Oladotun Hassan, Esq, Principal Partner/Secretary, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Epe Branch/ Executive Director, Lawyers for Justice Reform, and Barr. Myso Nejo.

SaharaReporters had also reported that the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), wrote Okotete, demanding her pay slips from 2019, statement of bank account from the same period, and loans approved as the Executive Director of NEXIM among others to aid in its investigation into alleged fraud and abuse of public office.

Meanwhile, in the letter to the upper legislative house, the petitioners requested the Senate to properly investigate Okotete over alleged corruption- round-tripping and recycling of different loans and use of various front companies as proxies to defraud NEXIM Bank of billions of naira.


In August 2023, the Department of State Services (DSS) and the Office of the National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu, sent letters to the Senate, urging the lawmakers not to confirm three of President Bola Tinubu’s ministerial nominees.

The three affected nominees indicted in the DSS and NSA letters were a former governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai, Okotete from Delta State and Senator Abubakar Danladi from Taraba State.

The Senate had confirmed 45 out of the 48 ministerial nominees sent in by Tinubu and after seven days of screening, the Senate left out El-Rufai, Danladi, a former Deputy Governor of Taraba State and Okotete.

Meanwhile, less than six months after she was denied ministerial confirmation by the Senate, sources said President Tinubu would give Okotete an appointment.


“I was so shocked when I sighted Stella Okotete’s name again here in Abuja for the position of Managing Director of NEXIM Bank. I just know Nigeria is finished. How can someone that was indicted and was not confirmed as a minister by the Senate be penciled down for appointment as a Managing Director of the same bank that she was not qualified to be its director.

“I have never seen a government like this APC government that so much encourages corruption before,” one of the sources said.

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