- Heritage Bank is Not Distressed, Says CBN
The Central Bank of Nigeria on Tuesday dismissed reports that Heritage Bank was in distress and unable to discharge its obligations to depositors.
The apex bank said in a statement issued by its Acting Director, Corporate Communications Department, Mr. Isaac Okoroafor, that Heritage Bank was not in distress.
The CBN called on depositors of Heritage Bank to disregard the reports and continue doing business with the lender.
The statement read in part, “The attention of the CBN has been drawn to false and malicious stories on the social media insinuating that Heritage Bank is under financial distress and therefore unable to discharge its obligations to its depositors.
“We wish to state that Heritage Bank is not in distress and, as such, its depositors should go about their transactions without fear. For the avoidance of doubt, we wish to further state that no Nigerian bank is in distress.
“The CBN, as the industry regulator, has a duty to depositors, in particular, and the economy in general, to ensure the soundness of all financial institutions.
“We, therefore, wish to assure all depositors of the safety of their deposits.”
The apex bank also said that it would continue to ensure the soundness and safety of the Nigerian financial system.
Okoroafor added, “The CBN also wishes to state that it will remain alive to its responsibility of ensuring banking system stability and soundness through constant monitoring and supervision of all licensed institutions.
“The CBN wishes to reiterate that the banking system remains resilient enough to weather the current economic storm.”
In a related development, Heritage Bank on Tuesday night refuted the claims of its inability to meet its obligations to customers.
The bank said while it acknowledged the challenging operating environment currently being experienced in all sectors of the economy, it remained financially stable and had continued to discharge its obligations to all customers and stakeholders.
Heritage Bank’s statement read in part, “This position is buttressed by the commendable results posted by the bank in the past financial year and the last three quarters of 2016, resulting in shareholders’ approvals to list its shares on the Nigerian Stock Exchange within one year of its business combination with the erstwhile Enterprise Bank Limited.
“The bank wishes to assure all customers and stakeholders of the safety of their deposits and financial transactions in line with our commitment to a strong service culture and sound corporate governance practice.”
An online media outfit, Saharareporters, had on Monday reported that Heritage Bank was currently stuck in a debilitating liquidity situation.
It quoted sources as saying that the bank was unable to meet customers’ immediate withdrawal requests and had wiped out all foreign currency domiciliary accounts through physical theft of cash by the bank’s directors.
It was further reported that First Bank Nigeria Limited, which handles Heritage Bank’s universal clearing activities, had threatened to blacklist the lender and stop further clearing transactions if its outstanding deficit of over N5bn was not cleared.
According to Saharareporters, out of about 500 Automated Teller Machines of the bank in the Lagos metropolis, only 138 were dispensing cash, adding that the bank lacked the money to feed the other machines.
It reported that the bank’s situation was further worsened by boardroom intrigues, tribal politics and ownership tussle.
The report claimed that the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, had ensured that these misdemeanours were kept hidden due to political pressure by the owners of the bank, and because the apex bank did not want to give the appearance of further distress in the banking sector following the recent crisis at Skye Bank.
Stanbic IBTC Obtains Approvals, License to Establish Life Insurance Subsidiary
Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc on Friday announced that it has obtained all required Regulatory Approvals and a license from the National Insurance Commission to establish a wholly-owned Life Insurance subsidiary, Stanbic IBTC Insurance Limited (SIIL).
In a statement signed by Chidi Okezi, Company Secretary, Stanbic IBTC and released on Friday, the bank said “The establishment of this new subsidiary essentially complements the bouquet of product offerings by Stanbic IBTC as it continues its goal of being the leading end-to-end financial solutions provider in Nigeria. In this regard, SIIL will aim to facilitate long term insurance for already financially included individuals and will seek to become the preferred Insurer in the Life Insurance Business.
“Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC, a member of Standard Bank Group, is a full-service financial services group with a clear focus on three main business pillars – Corporate and Investment Banking, Personal and Business Banking and Wealth Management. The group’s largest shareholder is the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), the world’s largest bank, with a 20.1% shareholding. In addition, Standard Bank Group and ICBC share a strategic partnership that facilitates trade deals between Africa, China and select emerging markets. Standard Bank Group is the largest African financial institution by assets. It is rooted in Africa with strategic representation in 21 countries on the African continent.
“Standard Bank has been in operation for over 158 years and is focused on building first-class, on-the-ground financial services institutions in chosen countries in Africa; and connecting selected emerging markets to Africa by applying sector expertise, particularly in natural resources, power and infrastructure.”
World Bank to Discuss New $1.5 Billion Loan Request From Nigeria
The Finance Minister, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, on Friday said the Federal Government has met all the conditions for a fresh loan of $1.5 billion from the World Bank.
The minister disclosed this on Bloomberg TV.
She said the multilateral financial institution is in the final stage of approving the loan. The minister explained that the loan will be discussed in the bank’s next meeting and possibly be approved in the same meeting.
In June, the Senate approved the borrowing plans but the World Bank pushed back demanding Nigeria fulfill the conditions attached to the $3.4 billion loan received from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in May.
Some of the conditions were to increase revenue generation by upping VAT, the introduction of tariff reflective electricity bill, the removal of subsidy and the unification of the nation’s foreign exchange.
Most of which the Federal Government has done despite protests from most Nigerians who called the new policies anti-people given their current situation.
Nigeria Realises Over N400 Billion from Company Income Tax in the Third Quarter of 2020
The Federal Government realised N416.01 billion from Company Income Tax (CIT) in the third quarter of the year, according to the latest report from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
This was 3.48 percent higher than the N402.03 billion generated in the second quarter of the year and represents a decline of 20.13 percent year-on-year from N520.89 billion realised in the third quarter of 2019.
A breakdown of the report showed the professional services sector including the telecoms generated the highest amount of CIT at N55.52 billion during the quarter, while the manufacturing sector followed with N42.03 billion.
The banking and financial institutions realised N24.05 billion while the mining generated the least and closely followed by Textile and Garment Industry and Local Government Councils with N120.93 million, N167.51 million and N321.72 million generated, respectively.
The report added that out of the total amount realised during the quarter under review, a sum of N244.70 billion was generated as CIT locally. The federal government collected N70.34 billion as foreign CIT payment and the remain N100.97 billion was received as CIT from other payments.
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