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CBN Returns N51.9bn Illegal Deductions to Bank Customers

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  • CBN Returns N51.9bn Illegal Deductions to Bank Customers

The Central Bank of Nigeria has said that it has recovered over N51.9bn illegally deducted by commercial banks and returned it to the customers.

The CBN stated that the amount was illegally removed from the accounts of bank customers across the country in the past five years.

The Acting Director, Corporate Communications, CBN, Mr. Isaac Okorafor, disclosed this in Port Harcourt during an interactive session with stakeholders, including labour union leaders, in the South-South zone.

Okoroafor stated that the recovery and return of the funds to customers became necessary after series of complaints on illegal deductions from their accounts by commercial bank customers got to the apex bank.

Putting the exact amount recovered and returned by the CBN Consumer Protection Department at N51,913,350,828.85, he explained that $18,191,444.19, €26.286,62 and £6,000 were also recovered within the period.

Okorafor, who was represented by an assistant director in the apex bank, John Attah, recalled that the CBN received 10,548 complaints, adding that the amounts recovered were from 5,746 resolved cases.

He stated, “When such complaints are received, the CBN will embark on a thorough investigation of what happened and how the deductions were made. If we discover that the bank was wrong, we will write and order the bank to return the money to the customer’s account.

“We do not keep this kind of money in any special account. Someone owns it and the banks know the accounts from where they made the deductions. So, we mandate them to pay it back into the accounts.”

He, however, expressed the apex bank’s continued commitment to customers’ protection, adding that the interactive session was aimed at educating stakeholders, particularly labour unions, on some of the financial policy drives of the CBN.

Okorafor stated that such financial initiatives were targeted at closing the gaps in the economy to foster development and safety of citizens.

On the Bank Verification Number, the acting director explained that the initiative was brought into the banking system to solve the challenges of customer identification based on finger prints.

“People use different names to open different accounts for different reasons and purposes; but with the help of the BVN, we should be able to know who is operating what account irrespective of the name. This has made criminals and fraudsters, who are operating secret accounts, to abandon their accounts in order not to be caught,” he stated.

The Vice President, Industrial Global Union, Mr. Issa Aremu, expressed gratitude to the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, for interfacing with labour unions on financial literacy since the past three years.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

Banking Sector

Peter Obaseki Retires as Chief Operating Officer of FCMB Group Plc

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The Board of Directors of FCMB Group Plc has announced the retirement of Mr. Peter Obaseki, the Chief Operating Officer of the financial institution, with effect from March 1, 2021. He was also an Executive Director of the Group.

His retirement was approved at a meeting of the Board of the Group on February 26, 2021. This has also been announced in a statement to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) by the financial institution.

The Chairman of FCMB Group Plc’s Board of Directors, Mr Oladipupo Jadesimi, thanked Mr. Obaseki for his valuable service and excellent support to the Board for many years.

FCMB Group Plc is a holding company divided along three business Groups; Commercial and Retail Banking (First City Monument Bank Limited, Credit Direct Limited, FCMB (UK) Limited and FCMB Microfinance Bank Limited); Investment Banking (FCMB Capital Markets Limited and CSL Stockbrokers Limited); as well as Asset & Wealth Management (FCMB Pensions Limited, FCMB Asset Management Limited and FCMB Trustees Limited).

The Group and its subsidiaries are leaders in their respective segments with strong fundamentals.

For more information about FCMB Group Plc, please visit www.fcmbgroup.com.

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Banking Sector

COVID-19: CBN Extends Loan Repayment by Another One Year

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Central Bank Extends One-Year Moratorium by 12 Months

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has extended the repayment of its discounted interest rate on intervention facility by another one-year following the expiration of the first 12 months moratorium approved on March 1, 2020.

The apex bank stated in a circular titled ‘Re: Regulatory forbearance for the restructuring of credit facilities of other financial institutions impacted by COVID-19’ and released on Wednesday to all financial institutions.

In the circular signed by Kelvin Amugo, the Director, Financial Policy and Regulation Department, CBN, the apex bank said the role-over of the moratorium on the facilities would be considered on a case by case basis.

The circular read, “The Central Bank of Nigeria reduced the interest rates on the CBN intervention facilities from nine per cent to five per cent per annum for one year effective March 1, 2020, as part of measures to mitigate the negative impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the Nigerian economy.

“Credit facilities, availed through participating banks and OFIs, were also granted a one-year moratorium on all principal payments with effect from March 1, 2020.

“Following the expiration of the above timelines, the CBN hereby approves as follows:

“The extension by another 12 months to February 28, 2022 of the discounted interest rate for the CBN intervention facilities.

“The role-over of the moratorium on the above facilities shall be considered on a case by case basis.”

It would be recalled that the apex bank reduced the interest rate on its intervention facility from nine percent to five percent and approved a 12-month moratorium in March 2020 to ease the negative impact of COVID-19 on businesses.

To further deepen economic recovery and stimulate growth, the apex bank has extended the one year-moratorium until February 28, 2022.

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Finance

MTN Nigeria Generates N1.35 Trillion in Revenue in 2020

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MTN Nigeria Grows Revenue by 15.1 Percent from N1.169 Trillion in 2019 to N1.35 Trillion in 2020

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic and challenging business environment, MTN Nigeria realised N1.346 trillion in revenue in the financial year ended December 31, 2020.

The leading telecommunications giant grew revenue by 15.1 percent from N1.169 trillion posted in the same period of 2019.

Operating profit surprisingly jumped by 8.5 percent from N393.225 billion in 2019 to N426.713 billion in 2020.

This, the telecom giant attributed to the surge in finance costs due to increased borrowings from N413 billion in 2019 to N521 billion in 2020.

MTN Nigeria further stated that the increase in finance costs was the reason for the decline in growth of profit before tax to 2.6 percent.

MTN Nigeria grew profit before tax by 2.6 percent to N298.874 billion, up from N291.277 billion filed in the corresponding period of 2019.

The company posted N205.214 billion profit for the year, a 0.9 percent increase from N203.283 billion recorded in the 2019 financial year.

Share capital remained unchanged at N407 million. While Total equity increased by 22.3 percent from N145.857 billion in 2019 to N178.386 billion in 2020.

MTN Nigeria’s market price per share increased by 61.8 percent from N105 to N169.90.

While market capitalisation as at year-end also expanded by 61.8 percent to N3.458 trillion, up from N2.137 trillion.

The number of shares issued and fully paid as at year-end stood at 20.354 million.

MTN Nigeria margins were affected by Naira devaluations and capital expenditure due to the new 4G network coverage roll-out.

Margins were adversely affected by the effect of naira devaluation and expenses associated with new sites’ roll-out to boost 4G network coverage in FY’20.

“On the former, we note that MTNN expanded the scope of its service agreement with IHS Holding Limited and changed the reference rate for converting USD tower expenses to NAFEX (vs CBN’s official rate previously). Thus, over the full-year period, the company’s operating margin contracted by 1.9 ppts YoY to 31.7%,” CardinalStone stated in its latest report.

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