[adsanity align='alignnone' id=368527]
Home Sectors BANKING & FINANCE Lawmakers Condemn Two Banks Over Unpaid Debt

Lawmakers Condemn Two Banks Over Unpaid Debt

House Warns NSIA Of Zero Budget For 2022 Over Failure To Make Presentation

Lawmakers in the House of Representatives on Thursday have condemned the refusal of Heritage and Polaris Banks to pay debt the banks owe the Federal Government.

The Chairman of the ad hoc committee on the assessment and status of all recovered loots from 2002 to 2020, Adejoro Adeogun, at the hearing said the management of Polaris Bank failed to agree to an out-of-court settlement with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

However, a representative of the bank insisted that debt had been completely paid but the NNPC said it had not received the payment.

A legal officer who represented the bank, but failed to identify himself, insisted that the bank had tendered evidence of the payment to the corporation.

READ ALSO: Declare Bandits Terrorists, El-Rufai Pleads With FG

Adeogun said, “You did not tender any evidence. You wrote a letter saying you directed CBN. Directing CBN does not mean CBN has paid the money.

You directed the CBN to use your reserve and if they make that payment, your reserve will fall below regulatory requirement. So, the CBN has ignored your advice and they have not paid.

“That money is supposed to be paid into the federation account to fund the 2022 budget. So, you have between now and Wednesday next to appear here with evidence of your payment, not instruction to CBN because that is not acceptable. We have to make sure that you pay that $32million to Nigerians.”

The Chief Financial Officer, NNPC, Umar Ajiya, said at the hearing that the NNPC was yet to receive the payment from the CBN, saying “Polaris Bank is still owing us $32m.”

The lawmakers also threatened to ensure that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) takes over the ownership of Heritage Bank of Nigeria for owing the Federal Government more money than its entire share capital.

The committee also threatened to issue an arrest warrant on the Managing Director of Polaris Bank for failing to appear before it to explain why the bank had not remitted over $32m owed to the NNPC.

Adeogun said, “If Heritage Bank is owing Nigeria more than its share capital, we will not hesitate to ask the National Assembly to write to CBN to take over Heritage Bank.

“They cannot be owing more than their share capital, sit on it and feel too big to respond to invitations from the National Assembly. Clark, you have to write them, giving them till Wednesday next week. That is the last time we are going to give them.”

The committee, however, turned back all representatives of the banks as well as the Accountant General of the Federation, saying they lacked the capacity to answer the questions from the committee, giving them till Wednesday next week to appear.


Leave a ReplyCancel reply

Exit mobile version