Independent directors

Wendy Lucas Bull
Wendy Lucas-Bull

Independent Non-Executive Chairman

Alex Darko
Alex Darko

Independent Non-Executive Director

Daisy Naidoo
Daisy Naidoo

Independent Non-Executive Director

Francis Okomo Okello
Francis Okomo-Okello

Independent Non-Executive Director

Ihron Rensburg
Ihron Rensburg

Independent Non-Executive Director

Mark Merson
Mark Merson

Independent Non-Executive Director

Nonhlanhla Mjoli-Mncube
Nonhlanhla Mjoli-Mncube

Independent Non-Executive Director

Rose Keanly
Rose Keanly

Independent Non-Executive Director

Tasneem Abdool-Samad
Tasneem Abdool-Samad

Independent Non-Executive Director

 

Swithin Munyantwali
Swithin Munyantwali

Independent Non-Executive Director

Sipho Pityana
Sipho Pityana

Lead Independent Director

Non-executive directors

Fulvio Tonelli
Fulvio Tonelli

Non-Executive Director

René van Wyk
René van Wyk

Non-Executive Director

Executive directors

Jason Quinn
Jason Quinn

Interim Group Chief Executive

Punki Modise
Punki Modise

Interim Group Financial Director

Executive Committee

Akash Singh
Akash Singh

Group Chief Compliance Officer

Arrie Rautenbach
Arrie Rautenbach

Chief Executive: Retail and Business Banking South Africa

Bongiwe Gangeni
Bongiwe Gangeni

Deputy Chief Executive: Retail and Business Banking South Africa

Charles Russon
Charles Russon

Chief Executive: Corporate and Investment Bank

Charles Wheeler
Charles Wheeler

Group General Counsel

Deon Raju
Deon Raju

Group Chief Risk Officer

Jason Quinn
Jason Quinn

Interim Group Chief Executive

Punki Modise
Punki Modise

Interim Group Financial Director

Prabashni Naidoo
Prabashni Naidoo

Group Chief Audit Executive

Alex Darko

Independent non-executive director

Alex Darko (68)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Alex joined the board as an independent non-executive director in 2014 and is a member of the Group Audit and Compliance Committee (GACC), Group Remuneration Committee (RemCo) and is the chairman of the Information Technology Committee (ITC).

Alex held a number of senior positions at Dun & Bradstreet, including director of UK shared services, director of finance at Dun & Bradstreet Europe Ltd and head of accounting re-engineering. He later moved back to Ghana and worked for Ashanti Goldfields in a number of senior roles. Alex was vice-president, knowledge and information at AngloGold Ashanti from 2005 to 2010.

Alex is a director at Nkululeko Leadership Consulting where he advises organisations on leadership, culture, strategy and change management. He is also a non-executive director of Reunert Limited.

Qualifications: MSc (MIS); Fellow of Chartered Certified Accountants (FCCA).

Daisy Naidoo

Independent non-executive director

Daisy Naidoo (48)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Daisy joined the board as an independent non-executive director in 2016. She is a member of the Group Audit and Compliance Committee (GACC), Group Credit Risk Committee (GCRC), and Group Remuneration Committee (RemCo). Daisy joined the Absa Financial Services (AFS) Board in July 2020, as well as the Group Actuarial Committee (GAC) and the Audit Risk and Compliance Committee (ARCC). Daisy assumed the Chairmanship of the ARCC in September 2020.

Daisy started her career in 1994 at Ernst & Young in Durban. She held various positions at South African Breweries, Deloitte and Sanlam Capital Markets, where she headed up the debt structuring unit between 2008 and 2010. Daisy is a non-executive director of Strate (Pty) Limited, Hudaco Industries Limited, Mr Price Group Limited, Anglo American Platinum Limited and Redefine Properties Limited.

Qualifications: BCom; CA (SA); Masters in Accounting (Taxation).

Francis Okomo Okello

Independent Non-Executive Director

Francis Okomo-Okello (71)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Francis joined the board as an independent director in 2014, and was appointed as the chairman  of the Social and Ethics Committee (SEC) with effect from 4 June 2020 and is a member of the Directors’ Affairs Committee (DAC).  Francis also joined the Absa Bank Limited board as independent non-executive director from 4 June 2020.

Francis is an Albert Parvin fellow of Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University, and a fellow of The Kenya Institute of Bankers. He is also an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya. He serves as chairman of TPS Eastern Africa Limited (Serena Group of Hotels and Lodges), and as a non-executive director of the Nation Media Group. Currently, Francis is the executive director in charge of legal and corporate affairs at Industrial Promotion Services Group of Companies, an affiliate of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development.

He also serves as a member of the advisory board of the Strathmore Business School (Strathmore University, Nairobi) and a member of the advisory committee of the Aga Khan University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences – East Africa.

Qualifications: LLB (Hons).

Ihron Rensburg

Independent directors

Ihron Rensburg (61)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Ihron joined the Board as an independent non-executive director on 1 October 2019. He is a member of the Social and Ethics Committee (SEC) and Group Remuneration Committee (RemCo).

Ihron was Vice Chancellor and Principal of the University of Johannesburg (UJ) from 2006 to 2017. Prior to his position at UJ, Ihron worked for the SABC and the Department of Education as Deputy Director General, where he was tasked to oversee and lead the development and implementation of the post-apartheid national education curriculum and policy.

Ihron is currently the Chairman of the South African National Commission for UNESCO. He is also Senior Advisor to the Principal and Visiting Professor at Kings College London. He has extensive strategy, policy development and organizational turnaround and merger experience, complemented by experience in engaging with government, business and civil society.

Qualifications: Doctor of Laws (Honoris Causa), PhD (International Development Education), MA (Political and Organisational Sociology), and Bachelor of Pharmacy.

Mark Merson

Independent directors

Mark Merson (52)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Mark joined the board in January 2014 as a non-executive director and became an independent non-executive director with effect from October 2017.  Mark is the chairman of the Group Risk and Capital Management Committee  (GRCMC), Group Credit Risk Committee (GCRC) and is a member of the Board Finance Committee (BFC) and Directors’ Affairs Committee (DAC) . Mark was appointed as an independent non-executive director of Absa Bank Limited on 15 May 2019.

Mark is a graduate of Oxford University, a chartered accountant and was previously a partner in the financial services consulting practice of Arthur Andersen and Deloitte. From 2003 through 2016, he served Barclays PLC in a variety of roles including group financial controller, head of investor relations, chief financial officer for the Corporate and Investment Bank and latterly deputy group finance director. Mark is also a director of Veritum Partners Limited, which offers advice on market interaction to European banks.

Mark is also Chairman of Absa Securities UK Limited.

Qualifications: ACA; MA (Hons).

Sipho Pityana

Lead Independent Director

Sipho M Pityana (61)

Lead Independent Director

Sipho joined the board as an independent non-executive director with effect from 1 May 2019. He was appointed as the lead independent director of both the Group and Absa Bank boards with effect from 4 June 2020.

He is a member of the Group Credit Risk Committee (GCRC), Group Risk and Capital Management Committee (GRCMC), Directors’ Affairs Committee (DAC) and is the chairman of the Group Remuneration Committee (RemCo). He is a former executive director of Nedcor Investment Bank Holdings from 2002 to 2004, responsible for strategic business development.

Sipho is the founder and chairman of Izingwe Capital, a black-owned investment company founded in 2004, which invests in a number of South Africa’s blue chip corporates. Sipho was the chairman of AngloGold Ashanti for 6 years from 2014 until December 2020, having served on that board since his appointment in 2007. He is also the chairman of JSE listed company Redefine Properties Limited.

He is the president of Business Unity South Africa (BUSA), and the co-chairman of the World Economic Forum (WEF) new Africa Regional Stewardship Board (RSB).

Qualifications: BA (Hons), MSc

Tasneem Abdool-Samad

Independent non-executive director

Tasneem Abdool-Samad (46)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Tasneem has been on the Absa Bank Board as an independent non-executive director since 2016, and joined the Board (Absa Group) as an independent non-executive director on 1 February 2018. She joined the Group Audit and Compliance Committee (GACC) on 1 April 2018 and assumed the position of GACC chairman from 4 June 2020. She rejoined the board of Absa Bank Limited as independent non-executive director with effect from 4 June 2020.

Tasneem is also a member of the   Group Risk and Capital Management Committee (GRCMC),  Board Finance Committee (BFC) and Directors’ Affairs Committee (DAC).  

Tasneem started her career at Deloitte in KwaZulu-Natal. She then moved to the University of the Witwatersrand, where she was a lecturer in auditing from 2003 to 2006. In 2006 she rejoined Deloitte and is a former member of the Deloitte South Africa board.

Tasneem is a non-executive director of Absa Financial Services Limited, Reunert Limited, Long4Life Limited and Bid Corporation Limited.

Qualifications: BCom; CA (SA)

Wendy Lucas Bull

Independent non-executive chairman

Wendy Lucas-Bull (67)

Independent Non-Executive Chairman

Wendy joined the board as an independent non-executive director and chairman in 2013. She is also chairman of Absa Bank and Absa Financial Services. Wendy is the chairman of the Directors’ Affairs Committee (DAC) , and she is also a member of the Board Finance Committee (BFC), Group Risk and Capital Management Committee (GRCMC), Group Remuneration Committee (RemCo), Group Credit  Risk Committee (GCRC), Social and Ethics (SEC) and Information Technology Committee (ITC). She is a permanent invitee  of the Group Audit and Compliance Committee (GACC).

Wendy is one of the founders of the Peotona Group. She was previously chief executive of FirstRand Limited’s retail businesses and prior to that an executive director of Rand Merchant Bank Holdings. Former non-executive directorships include those at Barclays PLC, Anglo American Platinum Limited, the Development Bank of Southern Africa, Alexander Forbes, Eskom, Nedbank, Telkom, Aveng (deputy chairman), Lafarge Industries (chairman), the South African Financial Markets Advisory Board, Discovery Holdings, Dimension Data PLC and the Momentum Group. She was also a member of the President’s Advisory Council on Black Economic Empowerment. She is Deputy Chairman of the Incorporation Board of the Gender-Based Violence Fundraising (GBVF) Response Fund.

Wendy was appointed as independent chairman of Shoprite Holdings Limited on 16 November 2020.

Qualifications: BSc

Swithin Munyantwali

Independent Non-Executive directors

Swithin Munyantwali (58)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Swithin joined the board as a non-executive director on 15 September 2019. He became an independent non-executive director from 1 March 2020, following his resignation from the board of Absa Bank Uganda Limited on 28 February 2020. He is a member of the Social and Ethics Committee (SEC) and Group Audit and Compliance Committee (GACC).

Swithin is the head of international law firm Appleton Luff’s East African office. He is the vice-chairman and co-founder of the International Law Institute African Centre for Legal Excellence.

Swithin was, until recently, the chairman of the Barclays Bank of Uganda board. He is a board member of the African Philanthropy Forum, and International Law Institute in Washington, DC. He is also a member of the advisory boards of the Case Western Reserve University, Emerging and Frontier Markets Association, and The New Markets Lab.

Qualifications: B.Sc. (Criminal Justice); Juris Doctor; Masters in International and Comparative Law.

Jason Quinn

Executive director

Jason Quinn (46)

Interim Group Chief Executive

Jason was appointed as interim Group Chief Executive Officer with effect from 20 April 2021. Jason joined the board and executive committee in September 2016. He is the chairman of the Models Committee (MC) and a member of the Group Risk and Capital Management Committee (GRCMC), Group Credit Risk Committee (GCRC), Social and Ethics Committee (SEC) and Information Technology Committee (ITC). He is an executive director of the Absa Bank Limited Board.

Before joining Absa Group, he was a partner at Ernst & Young Inc. Jason joined the Group in 2008 as the financial controller and was appointed as the head of finance in 2014 after holding several senior finance positions. Jason was appointed as Group Financial Director in September 2016.

Jason is a director of Absa Financial Services Limited, Woolworths Financial Services (Pty) Limited and is an employer-appointed trustee of the Absa Pension Fund.

Qualifications: BAcc (Hons); CA(SA).

Akash Singh

Executive committee

Akash Singh (48)

Group Chief Compliance Officer 

Akash Singh was appointed as the Group Chief Compliance Officer with effect from November 2019. Prior to this role, he was the Chief Compliance Officer of Retail and Business Bank SA. Akash was the Head of Operational Risk: Africa for Barclays Africa Group with oversight across 14 countries. He has also held various Internal Audit roles within the Absa Group.  Before joining Absa, Akash was with Nedcor Limited in the Finance function.

He has extensive knowledge and experience in strategic and technical management of operational risk, as well as regulatory and compliance risk management.

Qualifications: BCom (Hons); CA SA

Arrie Rautenbach

Executive committee

Arrie Rautenbach (55)

Chief Executive: Retail and Business Banking South Africa

With more than 25 years banking experience, Arrie previously served as the Group’s Chief Risk Officer simultaneously providing executive leadership for the Group Separation Program and Group Strategy Office. His earlier roles within the  Group included a number of leadership positions such as the Head of Retail Banking in South Africa, Managing Executive of Absa Card and Head of Absa’s Distribution portfolio.

He was named Retail International Banker magazine’s “Retail Banker of the Year” in 2012. Under his stewardship, Absa was also the recipient of awards in the categories of ‘Best Retail Bank in Africa’, ‘Best Retail Bank in South Africa’ and ‘Best Credit Card Management’ (2012) by The Asian Banker.

An accomplished retailer, Arrie contributes to the industry through his board executive membership of the Banking Association of South Africa (BASA) and board memberships of Ford Financial Services and Woolworths Financial Services.

Qualifications: BBA,  AMP, MBA .

Bongiwe Gangeni

Executive committee

Bongiwe Gangeni (42)

Deputy Chief Executive: Retail and Business Banking South Africa

Bongiwe Gangeni is the deputy chief executive for Retail and Business Bank with accountability for Private and Business Bank.

Since joining Absa in 2007, Bongiwe has held a number of senior positions in the bank, with her most recent role being managing executive for distribution in Wealth, Investment Management and Insurance (WIMI).

Bongiwe’s qualifications include a Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm) and postgraduate diploma in Management (PDM) from Wits Business School, an MBA from the Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) and she has also attended the Advanced Management Program (AMP) at Harvard Business School.

Qualifications: BPharm, PDM, MBA, AMP.

Charles Russon

Executive committee

Charles Russon (54)

Chief Executive: Corporate and Investment Bank

Charles joined the Group in 2006 and the Executive Committee in 2014. He was previously the chief executive: Engineering Services.

He completed his articles with KPMG and then joined Merrill Lynch in London as financial controller for credit products. Charles worked for Deutsche Bank in London and Frankfurt from 1998 to 2006 as the rates head of product control, before he joined Absa Capital in September 2006 as chief financial officer. He became the chief operating officer of Corporate and Investment Banking in October 2007 and regional head of Finance for Absa Group in September 2012. Charles was appointed as chief operating officer for Absa Group in May 2014.

Qualifications: CA (SA)

Charles Wheeler

Executive committee

Charles Wheeler (56)

Group General Counsel

Charles joined the Group and the Executive Committee in 2013.

Previously he worked as director: Legal Services at Standard Bank until 2003, as group executive: Commercial Legal at MTN Group Limited until 2010 and most recently as a legal consultant for Webber Wentzel.

Qualifications: BA, LLB, HDip (Tax).

Rose Keanly

Independent Non-Executive Director

Rose Keanly (62)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Rose joined the board as an independent non-executive director on 1 September 2019. She is a member of the Information Technology Committee (ITC), Group Risk and Capital Management Committee (GRCMC) and Group Remuneration Committee (RemCo). She has been a member of the Absa Financial Services (AFS) Board since July 2020.

Rose retired as the former Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Old Mutual Emerging Markets (OMEM) in February 2018, following a career with the Old Mutual group spanning 38 years and various, mainly information technology and operations related, positions. Prior to her position as COO, she was the Managing Director of OMEM Customer Services and Technology.

Qualifications: BSc; BCom (Honours).

Fulvio Tonelli

Fulvio Tonelli

Non-Executive Director

Fulvio Tonelli (61)

Fulvio joined the Absa Group Limited board as a non- independent non-executive director on 1 July 2020.  He is a member of the Group Credit Risk Committee (GCRC), Group Risk and Capital Management Committee  (GRCMC) and Information Technology Committee (ITC). He is also a non-executive director of Absa Kenya PLC.

Fulvio was, until the end of June 2019, the Chief Operating Officer at PwC Africa and a member of the firm's leadership team. In this role, he assisted in the delivery of the firm's strategic direction and was also responsible for the effective operation of the firm's risk management, finance, information technology and other internal firm services. Fulvio retired from PWC in June 2020 having joined PwC in July 1987. Prior to that he completed his articles at Deloitte.

Qualifications: BCom (Hons), CA (SA).

René van Wyk

Rene van Wyk

Non-Executive Director

René van Wyk (64)

René rejoined the Absa Group Board as a non-executive director from 1 August 2020. He served as the Group Chief Executive from 1 March 2019 to 14 January 2020.

René originally joined the board as an independent non-executive director on 1 February 2017. He is a member of the Group Risk and Capital Management Committee (GRCMC),  Group Credit Risk Committee (GCRC) and is the chairman of the Board Finance Committee (BFC).

René is the former registrar of Banks and head of banking supervision of the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) and retired from that position in May 2016. Prior to that, René  was with the Nedbank Group of companies from 1993 to 2011, where he occupied various positions, in the risk field, notably executive director responsible for risk at Nedcor Investment Bank, and CEO of Imperial Bank (a subsidiary of Nedbank). In his earlier years, he joined KPMG and became a partner in the financial services group.

Qualifications: BCom; BCompt (Hons); CA (SA).

Nonhlanhla Mjoli-Mncube

Nonhlanhla Mjoli

Independent Non-Executive directors

Nonhlanhla Mjoli-Mncube (62)

Independent Non-Executive Director

Nonhlanhla joined the board as an independent non-executive director on 15 October 2020.  She is a member of the Social and Ethics Committee (SEC) and Board Finance Committee (BFC).

 She is the former economic advisor to the Presidency, former chairman of the National Urban Reconstruction and Housing Agency and former deputy chair of the Construction Industry Development Board. Nonhlanhla serves on the board and audit committee of Zeder Investment Limited, is a director of Zeder Financial Services Limited, and has previously served on the boards of several other listed companies including Capitec Bank, WBHO Construction, Cadiz Financial Services, Tongaat Hulett and Pioneer Foods.

Qualifications: Post-Graduate Certificate (Engineering Business Management); Fellowship in Urban Development (MIT); Masters in Urban and Regional Planning.

Prabashni Naidoo

Executive committee

Prabashni Naidoo (45)

Ex Officio Member
Group Chief Audit Executive 

Prabashni was appointed Group Chief Audit Executive effective from 4 January 2021 and is an ex officio member of the Executive Committee. 

Prabashni is a seasoned Audit practitioner, with extensive experience in the banking industry. In her most recent role, she served as the Group Chief Internal Auditor at Nedbank Group, prior to which, she spent 15 years at Standard Bank in various senior roles.

Prabashni’s responsibilities include leading the teams implementing the Group Audit programme, while providing strategic leadership and counsel to both the Exco and the Board on internal and external audit matters. She also works closely with the Group Compliance and Risk functions in dispensing of her duties as Group Chief Audit Executive. 

Qualifications:  B.luris; Post-Graduate studies in Banking; Executive Programme Certifications in Risk Management, and Digital Business Transformation.

Punki Modise

Executive director

Punki Modise (51)

Interim Group Financial Director

Punki was appointed as interim Financial Director with effect from 23 April 2021, and is an executive director on the boards of Absa Group and Absa Bank. She is a member of the Group Risk and Capital Management Committee (GRCMC), Group Credit Risk Committee (GCRC), Information Technology Committee (ITC) and Models Committee (MC). She is an executive director of the Absa Bank Limited Board.

Punki joined Absa Group in 2008 and has held various senior management positions, including that of Chief Financial Officer: Retail and Business Banking since June 2016. Previous roles include Head: Transactional Banking, Chief of Staff: Retail Banking and Chief Financial Officer: Distribution Channels. Prior to joining Absa Group, she held positions at Standard Bank and Fedsure, having completed her articles at PricewaterhouseCoopers Inc.

Qualifications: B.Com; CA(SA); Masters in Financial Management 

Deon Raju

Group Chief Risk Officer

Deon Raju (43)

Group Chief Risk Officer

Deon Raju was appointed as Absa’s Group Chief Risk Officer with effect from 1 June 2021 and is a member of the Executive Committee.

Deon has been with Absa for over 20 years of his 22 years in banking. Most recently, Deon was the Group Treasurer, primarily responsible for the liquidity risk, funding, capital, and non-traded market risks of the Group.  Deon has held a variety of roles within the organisation, including within Enterprise Risk, Finance, Investment Banking, Credit Portfolio Management and Global Markets, and is  a seasoned banking professional with deep institutional knowledge of the Group, as well extensive and diversified banking experience in business, finance and risk management. 

Qualifications: B.Com (Hons); CA (SA); CFA.