AMMAN – Arab Bank Chairman Abdel Hamid Shoman on Thursday resigned from Jordan’s largest financial institution, citing disputes with senior executives as the main reason.
In a letter sent to the bank’s staff, Shoman said he was disappointed by the performance of the general manager and the board of directors.
A bank official, who preferred to remain unnamed, said that Shoman’s wife and his daughter Dina, who was the branding manager, also resigned from the bank.
In his letter to the bank’s employees, which was made available to The Jordan Times, Shoman accused the management of lacking the principles of good governance.
He noted that since the financial institution was established in 1930 by his grandfather as a family business, it was based on a set of principles and morals as well as transparency.
Shoman added that he had conveyed notes and remarks made by a group of managers and employees related to issues that may harm the financial and strategic interests of the bank to the board of directors, but said he was “shocked” and disappointed by the response of the management.
“The people who are supposed to protect the bank and safeguard its interests were the ones to give no attention to the issue,” Shoman said in the letter, adding that the bank’s general manager refused to discuss the remarks.
Shoman said he was further shocked by the position of the deputy chairman and board members who took the same position as the general manger at a board meeting.
Accusing top management of failing to shoulder its legal responsibilities, Shoman, who has served at the bank for nearly 40 years, said the directors had disappointed him, the bank and its employees.
“I can no longer remain part of this board of directors which turned its back on employees with regard to issues that may harm the bank,” added Shoman, who has served as Arab Bank Group chairman since 2005.
“After a long journey of success together, I’m sorry to tell you that today I submitted my resignation,” he concluded.
In a statement e-mailed to The Jordan Times the Arab Bank confirmed the news of Shoman’s resignation.
“We unfortunately confirm the news of Mr Abdel Hamid Shoman’s resignation from the board of directors, which was his personal decision. We extend our deep gratitude and recognise Mr Shoman’s great efforts in leading the bank for over 40 years,” the statement quoted Arab Bank Deputy Chairman Sabih Masri as saying.
“Arab Bank will continue on its journey of success locally, regionally and globally,” Masri added, stressing that the bank “will adhere to its strategic direction based on its historic values when it comes to operations, policies and prudent financial practices”.
“Arab Bank enjoys a strong management and institutional structure which has been built over many years,” he noted.
Also commenting on Shoman’s resignation, Central Bank of Jordan Governor Ziad Fariz said the move would not affect the bank, which he described as one of the largest banking institutions locally and regionally.
In a statement issued on Thursday Fariz emphasised that the bank enjoys a solid and sound financial situation, adding that Masri will assume the post as chairman of the Arab Bank according to the law.
During the first half of this year, the Arab Bank Group reported a 10 per cent growth in net profits to $360.3 million compared with $327.2 million during the same period of 2011.