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CBN reassures heritage bank customers, others safety of bank deposits

CBN intervenes in FX market with $122.67m sales to 46 authorised dealers

…denies plan to revoke more bank licences

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has reassured members of the banking public, particularly customers of Heritage Bank of the safety of their deposits and the banking system’s resilience.

This follows the recent revocation of the operating licence of Heritage Bank Plc as well as the reports of plans to revoke more licences.

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Hakama Sidi Ali, Acting Director of the Corporate Communications Department of CBN, in a statement issued to journalists on Monday, said that customers, particularly those of Heritage Bank, need not worry about the safety of their deposits, adding that the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) had commenced payment to the bank’s insured depositors.

Ali who faulted claims that the CBN was considering revoking the operating licences of Fidelity, Polaris, Wema, and Unity Banks, clarified that a circular issued by the Bank on January 10, 2024, notifying the public about the dissolution of the Boards of Union, Keystone, and Polaris Banks, is currently being circulated as though it was issued on June 10, 2024.

“Heritage’s case was isolated, allegations of further revocation of licences before the completion of the bank recapitalisation exercise were mere fabrications aimed at creating panic within the system.

“The CBN, with its robust regulatory framework, is proactively ensuring the stability of Nigeria’s financial system, thereby guaranteeing the safety of depositors’ funds in all Nigerian financial institutions,” she said.

While reiterating the assurances of Olayemi Cardoso, the CBN governor that the recapitalisation of banks in Nigeria was intended to bolster the banking system and safeguard the sector against risks, Ali urged all stakeholders to cooperate in ensuring the success of the process, which she noted would be for the overall growth of the Nigerian economy.

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“Without prejudice to the ongoing recapitalisation process, I want to restate that the Nigerian banking industry remains resilient. Key financial soundness indicators remain within current regulatory thresholds.

“Customers are, therefore, encouraged to proceed with their transactions as usual, as the CBN is committed to ensuring the safety of the banking system,” she added.