The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefile, on Tuesday said it has initiated discussion with stakeholders in the judiciary to ensure quick recovery of bad loans.
This, according to him, has become necessary because recalcitrant debtors are frustrating the debt recovery efforts of financial institutions in the country.
The governor, who was represented by Deputy Governor, Financial System Stability, Aisha Ahmad, said this while speaking at a workshop for judicial officers on recent reforms of the banking financial services sectors in Nigeria: Banks and other Financial Institutions Act, 2020 (BoFIA) in Focus.
He said, “The Special Tribunal for the Enforcement and Recovery of Eligible Loans was introduced in the Act to accelerate credit recovery processes and enforcement of collateral rights.
“The Special Tribunal, together with the Bank’s Policy on Global Standing Instruction, will address the incidence of non-performing loans that has posed a great threat to the Nigerian financial system.”
He said that supervisory observance indicated that recalcitrant debtors had exploited the non-prioritisation of credit recovery matters in the Nigerian judicial system to frustrate debt recovery efforts by financial institutions.
Emefiele emphasised the importance of the judiciary in upholding CBN’s mandate and ensuring orderly operation of the financial system.
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Speaking on the significance of the BOFIA 2020, he said the act was expected to reinvigorate the Nigerian banking sector as it would engender a sound and stable financial system that would support sustainable growth and development of the Nigerian economy.
He said the BOFIA 2020 also strengthened the Anti-Money Laundering and Combating Financing of Terrorism Framework by mandating regulated entities to comply with AML/CFT and cybersecurity regulations.
“This comes at a very auspicious time as the nation continues to advance in its adoption of digital economy; which has heralded the birthing of Nigeria’s Central Bank Digital Currency – the e-Naira,” he added.
Emefiele also pointed out that the BOFIA contained provisions to effectively manage unclaimed funds or abandoned property in dormant accounts maintained with banks, specialised banks and other financial institutions, as well as recovery tools for failing banks.