A notable member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and Managing Director of First City Monument Bank (www.fcmb.com), Mrs. Yemisi Edun, has called on the foremost professional accountancy body and its affiliates to prioritise leadership development programmes for female accountants.
She made the call during the investiture of Mrs. Catherine Nnaji as the 10th President of the Society of Women Accountants of Nigeria (SWAN) and the swearing-in of her new executives in Lagos. SWAN is a national body dedicated to serving all female members of ICAN. Mrs. Edun, who worked in leadership roles that include Chief Compliance Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Director before her elevation as Managing Director, was the keynote speaker at the event. She urged SWAN and ICAN to prepare female accountants for expansive roles that would move them from compliance officers to business advisors and ultimately to senior leadership roles.
According to the Bank Chief, the accountancy profession in Nigeria is improving its gender diversity as more firms now hire and promote women. However, she decried the under-representation of female accountants in senior leadership roles. The business leader urged ICAN and SWAN to take advantage of the increasing number of women studying for a professional degree in accountancy and those employed in accounting roles to train and scale female representation in the C-Suite of large corporations progressively.
Mrs. Edun commended the Society of Women Accountants of Nigeria for unifying the qualified women of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) under a platform that provides leadership, mentorship, networking, education, and empowerment.
The new President of SWAN, Mrs. Nnaji, expressed gratitude to the Association and its members for their commitment. She challenged women accountants to always uphold the tenets of the profession and further develop themselves because they can now attain greater heights.
Also speaking, the Governor of Abia State, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, described the ceremony as a “celebration of excellence for women”.
While congratulating the new Executive members of SWAN, he tasked women to rise above the challenges of the environment to attain leadership positions. The Governor expressed the belief that women in accountancy under the aegis of SWAN can contribute more to the well-being of our country and humanity. He also urged female accountants in the country to get more involved in governance.
With a membership strength of over 13,820, SWAN assists ICAN in protecting the Charter, Status, and interests of female members by promoting high standards of efficiency and professional conduct in line with international best practices.