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Kenya: KAB CEO Habil Olaka set to retire in March

Raimond Molenje has been appointed as the acting Chief Executive Officer of the Kenya Bankers Association following the announcement of the imminent retirement of the organization’s long-serving CEO, Dr. Habil Olaka.

Following the retirement of the current CEO, Habil Olaka, Raimond Molenje has been appointed as the acting Chief Executive Officer of the Kenya Bankers Association.

Olaka who joined the umbrella body of banking institutions in 2010 will be exiting the outfit by end of the March.

During his tenure, Olaka led the introduction of the Sustainable Finance Initiative (SFI) in 2015 to support member banks to create long-term value for the economy, society, and the environment. The initiative culminated in the issuance of the first Green Bond in Kenya and by extension, the East African region in 2019.

Habil Olaka made significant contributions to the banking industry, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. He spearheaded industry-led initiatives among member banks to mitigate the impact of the pandemic, preventing it from escalating into a financial crisis. Additionally, Olaka played a pivotal role in the development of PesaLink, a real-time payment services solution for the banking sector. Under his leadership, a robust Automated Clearing House and cheque processing system were established, significantly reducing cheque clearing time from four days to just one day.

John Gachora, Chairman of the KBA Governing Council, highlighted that under Olaka’s leadership, the Kenya Bankers Association experienced growth and reached noteworthy milestones that benefited not only banks but also the financial sector and the overall economy.

“Under Olaka’s leadership, KBA has continued to reinforce a reputable and professional banking sector that best support Kenyans, who entrust their ambitions and hard-earned resources with its member banks,” Gachora said.

Molenje, who joined KBA in 2018, brings with him 19 years of extensive experience in legal and regulatory practice, human capital management, and policy advocacy. He has held senior management positions in prominent business member organizations for a decade, demonstrating his expertise and leadership capabilities in various domains.

On his part, Olaka said: “It has been an honor to lead and transform KBA into a formidable financial sector advocacy group over the last 13 years and wish to thank the KBA, Governing Council, member banks, and the Central Bank of Kenya leadership over the period, stakeholders and KBA staff for their support.”

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