First Bank of Nigeria Ltd., Nigeria’s biggest lender by assets, paid a fine of 1.88 billion Naira ($9.4 million) relating to a directive for banks to transfer deposits of state companies and entities to the Central Bank. First Bank is the third major company to be sanctioned by regulators in a space of 7 days.
Tijjani Borodo, the secretary of parent company FBN Holdings Plc, said in a statement on the Nigerian Stock Exchange’s website that “The management of First Bank is still engaging in conversations with the Central Bank of Nigeria on this regulatory decision,”
President Muhammadu Buhari through The Central Bank Governor Godwin Emefiele gave banks until September 15th 2015 to move funds for state-owned bodies to the Treasury Single Account in a move designed to clamp down on corruption and financial waste in the public sector. Interbank rates rocketed before the deadline as banks scrambled for cash.
In a related string of events, a separate financial regulator also ordered the suspension of the chief executive officer and chairman of Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc, after accusing the company of posting misleading statements over two years. StanbicBank although denies the allegations.
By Omolara Adegoke
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