Picture: ISTOCK
Picture: ISTOCK

Nedbank has appointed Neo Dongwana and Linda Manzini to its board, which will lift its transformation status amid parliamentary hearings on the issue.

Dongwana, the second black woman to become a partner at Deloitte’s SA, and Manzini, a former director and head of investment banking coverage at Standard Bank, where she also headed its Diners Club offering, will join the bank in June.

"Dongwana and Manzini were appointed in terms of the formal board succession plans and on the basis of their wealth of experience and expertise," said Thulani Sibeko, Nedbank group executive for marketing and communications.

Manzini will serve on the group credit committee and the large-exposure approval board, which aims to bring a greater understanding of the issues black businesses face in accessing finance.

Dongwana and Manzini replace Tom Boardman and David Adomakoh, who will resign at the bank’s annual general meeting in two weeks.

Legae Securities research head Waseem Thokan said the stockbroker supported efforts to diversify and transform boards.

The appointments will lift the percentage of black women who can vote at board meetings from 17.7% to 29.4% — exceeding the target set by the Financial Sector Code.

It also exceeds the 26% share of the vote black female directors have at FirstRand and 20% at Standard Bank.

"Both appointments are very strong, with excellent skills and experience, and should add a lot of value," said PSG Wealth portfolio manager Adrian Cloete, portfolio manager at PSG Wealth. "Nedbank’s board is diverse in demographics, skills and experience."

"Nedbank is at the forefront of transformation and this leadership in transformation has been acknowledged widely."

Thokan said it was important for women and previously disadvantaged individuals to be appointed to boards to  derive most benefit from their input, rather than being appointed as a reputational exercise.

Legae  preferred a pipeline of internal talent for women and black executive and nonexecutive directors within companies, which Thokan said would lead to gender and racial transformation without disrupting the a board’s monitoring and strategy formulation role.

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