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Abdulmajid Mussa Nsekela: Pioneering Change in Tanzania’s Banking Sector

In the realm of East Africa’s financial sector, one name stands out as a beacon of innovation and transformative leadership, and that is no other name than Abdulmajid Mussa Nsekela, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of CRDB Bank Plc, Tanzania’s largest and most influential banking institution.

With an illustrious career spanning two decades, Abdulmajid Mussa Nsekela has proven to be a visionary force through his visionary approach and commitment to innovation, shaping the future of the banking industry.  As the Chief Executive Officer of CRDB Bank, his relentless drive for innovation and unwavering commitment to excellence have propelled him to the forefront of Tanzania’s financial realm. From spearheading groundbreaking initiatives to fostering economic empowerment.

It is interesting to note that Nsekela has not only revolutionized CRDB Bank but has also played a pivotal role in reshaping the entire banking landscape in Tanzania. Join us on an extraordinary journey as we uncover the remarkable accomplishments of this trailblazing leader, who has redefined the possibilities of banking in Tanzania and beyond.

Appointed as the Group CEO & Managing Director of CRDB Bank in October 2018, Nsekela has implemented strategic reforms, which have turned around the Bank’s performance from declining profitability. In June 2019, he rolled out a new operating model, which is credited for the improved performance and growing profitability. During the 2019 financial year, CRDB Bank Group posted a TZS 120 billion profit, an 87% jump, attributed to improved efficiency and sales.

Nsekela is known to be one who is passionate about leadership, economic empowerment and financial inclusion. Since joining the CRDB Bank Group, he has launched various initiatives to mentor young bank executives into leadership. In 2019, he again established CRDB Bank SHE INITIATIVE – a mentorship program providing women with financial and managerial skills to empower them into business leadership.

Abdulmajid Mussa Nsekela began his career journey at CRDB Bank in the year 1997 as a Bank Officer and in 1998, he was selected to be part of the transition team that changed CRDB Bank culture. Due to his competence in work, in 2000, he was promoted to Relationship Manager to form a solid team that established and developed the current Corporate Banking Department. Following his contribution to CRDB Bank PLC, in 2003, he was again promoted to a Senior Relationship Manager.

Mr. Nsekela joined NMB Bank PLC in 2008 as Senior Manager-personal Banking before being promoted to Head of Personal Banking in 2013. In December 2015, he was appointed Head of Retail Business. Prior to joining NMB Bank Plc, Nsekela spent 11 years at Tanzania’s largest publicly listed Bank, CRDB Bank Group, where he served in various leadership roles within the Corporate Banking and Retail Departments.

At NMB Bank, Nsekela is credited with transforming the Bank’s Retail Banking business by implementing a scalable distribution model, which accelerated the Bank’s expansion through alternative channels, between 2015 – 2018.

A notable achievement was the successful roll-out of NMB Bank’s Agency Banking model, NMB Wakala, which considerably expanded the lender’s network distribution making it the biggest bank network in Tanzania. He also spearheaded NMB Bank’s adoption of digital banking, which provided a case framework for nationwide implementation within the banking industry in Tanzania.

Mr. Nsekela rejoined CRDB Bank PLC from NMB Bank PLC where he was the Business Head Retail, in December 2015. He was instrumental in engineering the transformation of retail infrastructure and growth of branch network. He also championed the establishment of alternative channels such as mobile banking technology, ATM and Agent Banking Network. He has led innovation, change process and turning around the bank performance as well as strengthening leadership position in terms of network coverage.

In the first decade of his career, Nsekela served in various functional leadership positions, covering bank operations, control functions and people management.

He later, in the second decade of his career, served in diverse strategic leadership positions, spanning Financial and Strategic Planning, Risk, Governance, Auditing and Compliance.

Mr. Nsekela, whose name cannot go unnoticed has been responsible for the transformation of the banking sector in Tanzania. He has spearheaded numerous innovations across the banking industry by contributing to change within the two largest commercial banks in Tanzania -CRDB Bank Plc and NMB Bank Plc.

Due to his tremendous effort, hardwork and determination in the banking industry, positioning it as an enviable one, Mr. Abdulmajid Nsekela has been named as one of the 25 top African Finance Leaders in 2023 by The African Leadership Magazine (ALM). This is due to his leadership role in the lender’s innovative policies, programs and actions that have partly helped to foster financial inclusion even during challenging times.

Abdulmajid holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration majoring in International Banking Finance (MBA-IBF) and Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration (PDGBA) from Birmingham University (UK). He is also an alumnus of the Institute of Finance Management (IFM) where he graduated with an Advanced Diploma in Banking.

Nsekela’s astuteness in business leadership has earned him key roles on various Management Boards in the United Republic of Tanzania. He is the Chairman of Tanzania Bankers Association, an umbrella body that brings together players in the Banking industry in Tanzania and the Chairman of Arts and Culture Fund. He served as a member on various boards including the Tanzania Financial Inclusion National Council, Tanzania Private Sector Foundation, Tanzania Mortgage Refinance Company Limited and Economic & Social Research Foundation.

Abdulmajid also serves as a council member to the Tanzania National Business Council (TNBC).

As a seasoned banker and a business leader, Nsekela has over 20 years of professional experience in Retail, Investment, Commercial Banking, Banking Operations and Control Functions. He also has vast experience in transformational leadership, business turnaround and strategic management.

Mr. Nsekela is a devoted family man, father of four and married to his best friend Sekita Nsekela.

By: Diella Teku / InstinctBusiness Magazine

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