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Banks comply to CBN directive, To Commence Closure of Accounts Of Unregistered Associations And Societies

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By Gloria Ikibah.

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In compliance with the directive of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), banks have commenced the process of closing down bank accounts of unregistered associations and societies.

Though no reason was proffered for this directive from the Apex financial institution, it is believed that in the coming days issues will be made clear.

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Naijablitznew.com recalled that the Apex bank recently directed by that all Community Based Association bank accounts opened without CAC Certificate to be closed on or before July 12, 2022.

According to the directive, any Association, Club, Town Union, Age Grade, Foundation, or Church account affected must register with Corporate Affairs Commissions and get a Corporate Affairs Commissions (CAC) Certificate to enable them run their account.

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Most banks already have warned customers of this latest development urging them to take steps to regularize. According to Access Bank PLC in its notice, the process of closing such accounts begins 12th of July, 2022.

The mail reads: “Dear Esteemed Partner, Following CBN’s directive on unregistered Community Savings Accounts, please be advised that all associations or societies are expected to provide their registration documents on or before July 12th, 2022. All accounts regularized by this date will be closed accordingly.”

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With respect to unregistered accounts such as migration of funds, retrieval of money etc., funds on closed accounts cannot be migrated or transferred.

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AMCON liabilities hit N5.7tn – CBN report

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Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria’s liabilities stood at N5.72tn as of the end of the first half of 2022.

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The Financial Markets Department of the Central Bank of Nigeria disclosed this in its ‘Half-year activity report 2022’ released on Thursday.

It stated that, “The carrying value of AMCON’s liabilities stood at N5.72tn at end-June 2022. Of this amount, AMCON notes, with an outstanding balance of N3.86tn, and the loan (Debenture) of N500bn accounted for 76.27 per cent of the liabilities. The notes are due to mature on December 27, 2023 and the N500bn loan is due for redemption on December 30, 2022.”

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Recently, AMCON said in a statement that the Senate appealed for more support on its recovery drive

It stated that the Chairman Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions, Senator Uba Sani, reiterated the willingness of the National Assembly to continually support the debt recovery efforts of Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria.

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According to the statement, he said the support had become critical because AMCON remained a strategic national institution that played important and pivotal role in helping to stabilise the economy.

“AMCON is saddled with the tough assignment of recovering nearly N5tn owed the country by debtors who for years now hide under all manners of technicalities to tie AMCON up in different courts to stall repayment,” it stated.

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Sani who was represented by Senator Olubunmi Adetumbi however commended the management of AMCON for remaining resolute.

While appealing to other agencies of the Federal Government and all stakeholders to support the recovery drive of AMCON, Sani also appreciated the contribution of the Inter-Agency Committee set up by the Federal Government sometime in 2019 to ensure that debtors are held accountable.

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The work of the committee had brought many obligors to the negotiation table, it added.

It stated, “The committee is made up of heads and representatives of agencies including the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit.

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“Others are heads of the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Ministry of Justice and AMCON. They were expected to review the status of the huge debts owed to AMCON, deliberate on practical, legal and other strategies for the recovery of the outstanding debts.”

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Fuel queues grow longer after FG sufficiency claim

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The queues for Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, grew longer on Thursday after the Federal Government’s claims that there was enough PMS in Nigeria that would last for 34 days.

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On Wednesday, the government broke its several weeks of silence on the lingering fuel scarcity nationwide, as it claimed that it had enough product to keep the country wet for over a month.

Despite its claims, the queues for petrol at filling stations in Abuja, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger and other states grew longer on Thursday, as thousands of motorists thronged the few outlets that dispensed the commodity.

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At the Conoil and Total fillings stations directly opposite the headquarters of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited in Abuja, hundreds of motorists formed long queues as they struggled to buy petrol.

“I read in the papers that there is enough petrol that will last for more than 30 days, but, surprisingly, we are still seeing queues because many filling stations are not selling. So where are the products, please?” a motorist, who simply gave his name as Daniel, stated.

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The government had, through its Nigeria Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority, said on Wednesday that it had no plan to increase the pump price of petrol, describing comments on PMS price and its availability as speculations.

It had also stated that there was enough PMS that would last for more than a month, and urged petrol users to shun panic buying.

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The NMDPRA had said, “This advisory addresses speculations on the price and availability of Premium Motor Spirit. The authority wishes to inform the general public that the Federal Government has no intention of increasing the price of PMS during this period.

“The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited has imported PMS with current stock levels sufficient for 34 days.

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“Consequently, marketers and the general public are advised to avoid panic buying, diversion of products, and hoarding. In keeping with the authority’s responsibilities as outlined in the Petroleum Industry Act, the authority assures the public that it would continue to monitor the supply and distribution of all petroleum products nationwide especially during this holiday season.”

When contacted, the President, Petroleum Retail Outlet Owners Association of Nigeria, Billy Gillis-Harry, told our correspondent that the fuel supply situation had yet to stabilise.

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He, however, noted that marketers were intensifying efforts to clear the queues, noting that the government, through NNPC, should ensure that there was adequate provision of PMS to dealers nationwide.

“I keep saying that what we need to deal with now is the issue of availability. We are intensifying efforts to clear the queues, but the major thing is for the product to be available,” Gillis-Harry stated.

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Senate threatens CBN Gov, BOI MD, others with warrant of arrest over N500b DBN Fund

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For failing to honour its invitation. Senate’s Ad – Hoc Committee on uneven disbursement of N500billion development fund across the six geo – political zones by Development Bank of Nigeria ( DBN) has threatened to issue warrant of arrests on the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria , Godwin Emefiele and heads of affected financial institutions.

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Apart from the CBN Governor, the Committee headed by Senator Sani Musa (APC Niger East), also threatened to arrest the Managing Director of Bank of Industry , Olukayode Pitan, the Managing Director of Nigeria incentive – Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending ( NIRSAL), Aliyu Abdulhamid and the Director General of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria ( SMEDAN), Olawale Fasanya .

Heads of the five agencies incurred the wrath of the Committee with their conspicuous absence at investigative hearing carried out on Wednesday on the alleged uneven disbursement of N500billion development fund.

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Irked by their absence at the session, the Chairman of the Committee , Senator Sani Musa said out of the eight relevant government agencies needed for the investigation , five were invited to appear before the committee at the Wednesday session.

“Out of these five, only two came while the remaining three who are the CBN, BOI and NIRSAL, were conspicuously absent without any letter from them explaining why .

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“Assignment before this committee is a very important one, requiring cooperation and compliance from all those linked to issues at hand.

“MD of DBN and his counterpart from the Bank of Agriculture are here for required clarifications and explanations , making it mandatory for CBN Gov , MD of BOI and DG of NISRAL to appear unfailingly in subsequent sessions or risk being coerced through issuance of warrant of arrest”, he said.

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He added that Ministers of Finance , Zainab Ahmed, Trade and Investment , Niyi Adebayo and Humanitarian Affairs, Sadiya Umar Farouq, will appear before the committee on Thursday this week for required submissions on roles played in the alleged uneven disbursement of funds.

But in his submission before the committee, the Managing Director of DBN, Tony Okpanachi denied deliberate lopsidedness in the disbursement of the fund.

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He said laid down criteria set by the Central Bank of Nigeria were used for fund disbursement.

“Our lending has criteria and they are the same with those set by the Central Bank of Nigeria,” he said.

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He explaibed that for a business to qualify for the DBN loan, it must have less than 250 employees and must not have done a turnover of more than N1.1 billion.

“We do a risk assessment of the participating financial institutions (PFIs) before they begin to lend to businesses. We don’t want to give out money and the money fritters away. So we track the end users of the loans yearly,” he said.

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He added that the location of the registered MSMEs in Nigeria also explained the reason for the loan’s disbursement.

Statustically, he explained to the committee members that out of the registered MSMEs across Nigeria, Lagos alone has 25%, South West 23%, South South 18%, South East 10%, North Central 10%, North West 9%, FCT 4% and North East 2%.

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He however informed the committee that DBN has asked participating financial institutions to build the capacity of smallscale businesses, and train them on how to structure their businesses for them to be able to access the loans.

“For DBN, it’s a continuous process to get more businesses on board,” he stressed.

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