BIL Director-General (2nd from left) with the Institute's first graduating class following the ceremony on, Friday, October 11, 2019.
The Banking Institute of Liberia (BIL) has graduated its first batch of students who were trained in regulatory framework and compliance, internal audit, system and controls and corporate risk management, among others.
BIL was established in 2014 by the Liberia Bankers Association and the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), to provide cutting edge training and capacity building support to stakeholders in the banking and financial sector. The 130 pioneer candidates came from nine commercial banks, which included the CBL and one-micro-finance institution.
In a remark, CBL Director of Financial Markets, Armazo Bawn, who served as the program's guest speaker, told the graduates to use the skills acquired during training to become visionaries and solve the numerous challenges facing the banking sector.
Mr. Bawn added that although the country is experiencing a severe economic crisis, the problems can be resolved if bankers become innovative.
"As we journey through life, there are many challenges that we must overcome; you either overcome them or they will overcome you. Remember, when life chokes you, choke it back, it would soon find out that no one messes with you. Everyone complains about the hard times; certainly, we can learn something from the women's battle cry, 'women ooh women, women; don't sit there, do something!'" Mr. Bawn told the graduates.
"We are faced with the difficulties of everyday life; could this be an opportunity to do something new, whatever the economic conditions may be? We are not the first to experience such economic hardship. Let me say this to you, amid these difficulties, you have the power to control destiny with your mind; whatever you desire, so shall it be if you work towards it. You hold the key in the palm of your hand, use it," Mr. Bawn said.
Armazo Bawn, CBL Director of Financial Market, who served as Banking Institute of Liberia's first convocation guest speaker.
Mr Bawn further admonished the graduates that the greatest tragedy that will befall them is to walk out of BIL and lack vision.
"Without a vision, you are just playing games with your life. You are a product of your choices. You will become the sum of the little choices in life. Not to decide is to decide not to," he said.
Also speaking at BIL's graduation program was BIL Director-General, Assistant Professor Richard S. Panton, who said the journey to the institution's first graduation has not been an easy task, but with courage and determination, they were able to make the difference.
"Human capital development is essential for national growth and development in any society. This is because when there is highly skilled and trained manpower, the challenges facing the society can easily be overcome. Trained and highly skilled staffs can unravel complex problems in the environment. Additionally, the trained and skilled staff becomes more innovative in finding solutions to organizational problems as well as translating corporate policies into achievable action steps," Mr. Panton said.