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NAB Chair, CEO Quit After Scathing Royal Commission Report

Heads have rolled at National Australia Bank, with both chief executive Andrew Thorburn and chair Ken Henry resigning in the wake of the banking Royal Commission.

Former NSW Premier Mike Baird -- currently chief customer officer of the bank -- could be in line to take a top position at NAB.

"National Australia Bank Chief Executive Officer Andrew Thorburn and Chairman Dr Ken Henry today advised they would leave the bank," the bank said in a statement.

READ MORE: Banks Slammed In Scathing Royal Commission Findings

The bank said Thorburn will finish on February 28, while Henry will stay until NAB appoints a new permanent CEO.'

Royal Banking Commission Handed Down

"I acknowledge that the bank has sustained damage as a result of its past practises and comments in the Royal Commission's final report about them," Thorburn said in the statement, noting there was a "desire for change" at the NAB.

Henry said both he and Thorburn were "deeply sorry for this", and also claimed his "decision is not made in reaction to any specific event".

Philip Chronican, a current NAB director, will serve as acting CEO from March 1.

Andrew Thorburn during a parliamentary inquiry at Parliament House (AAP Image/Lukas Coch)

In a media call after the announcement, Henry said NAB had an "inability" to meet community expectations, and said it was "a sad day" for the company. Thorburn admitted the bank had "fallen short" and "has a lot of work to do".

Kenneth Hayne's final Royal Commission report, released this week, expressed serious concerns about the leadership of both NAB executives.

READ MORE: How The Banking Royal Commission Will Change Our Financial System

READ MORE: 'You Have Failed': Shareholders In Record-Breaking Revolt Against NAB

"Having heard from both the CEO Mr Thorburn, and the chair Dr Henry, I am not as confident as I would wish to be that the lessons of the past have been learned," Hayne wrote.

NAB asked the Australian Stock Exchange to place its stocks in a trading freeze on Thursday afternoon, in anticipation of an announcement about leadership changes.

Thorburn said on Tuesday he was "more determined than ever" to lead the bank, but also told the ABC he "can't guarantee" his future.

The lender's shares were 1.26 percent higher when trading was paused at 15.14 AEDT on Thursday.

ABC TV's 7.30 host Leigh Sales said Henry was scheduled as her guest on Thursday's program.

More to come.

With AAP.