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No Plans to Revoke Polaris, Unity, Keystone Banks’ Licences

Contrary to rife speculations in the media that the licences of three more banks are to be revoked by the Central Bank of Nigeria following the revocation of Heritage Bank’s licence earlier in the week, the apex bank has denied any such plans.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in a statement on Tuesday signed by its Acting Director of Corporate Communications, Mrs Hakama Sidi Ali, stated that it’s attention has been drawn to some information circulating in the public domain,suggesting that the CBN is set to revoke the licenses of three additional banks following its regulatory action against Heritage Bank Plc on Monday, June 3, 2024.

It will be recalled that the operating licence of Heritage Bank was revoked on Monday by the apex bank citing breach of extant banking rules, progressive decline in fortunes which threatens financial stability and lack of recovery prospects.

Explaining it’s action, the CBN had stated on Monday as follows: “This action has become necessary due to the bank’s breach of Section 12 (1) of BOFIA, 2020. The Board and Management of the bank have not been able to improve the bank’s financial performance, a situation which constitutes a threat to financial stability. This follows a period during which the CBN engaged with the bank and prescribed various supervisory steps intended to stem the decline. Regrettably, the bank has continued to suffer and has no reasonable prospects of recovery, thereby making the revocationof the license the next necessary step.”

Dismissing the speculations which had actually mentioned PolarisBank, Keystone Bank and Unity Bank in their allusions the apex bank stated, “The CBN unequivocally states that these allegations are false and intended to trigger panic in the financial system.

The CBN therefore assured that, “Nigerian financial system remains safe, sound, and resilient. Our banks have begun submitting implementation plans for the Banking Sector Recapitalisation Programme in compliance with the CBN Circular reviewing the minimum capital requirements for Commercial, Merchant, and Non-Interest Banks (CMNIBs). These plans are currently being reviewed by the Bank.”

“In addition to enhancing buffers to withstand economic shocks, this proactive measure by the CBN to require CMNIBs to recapitalize will result in increased capital for Nigeria’s banks, enabling them to provide much-needed credit to critical sectors of the economy. This will increase the financial system’s contribution to the growth and development of a $1 trillion Nigerian economy,” Mrs Ali stated.

“The CBN would like to reassure all stakeholders of its unwavering commitment to ensuring the financial system’s stability.

“Our financial system remains on a solid footing, and the CBN will continue to take all necestabilityssary steps to maintain its safety and soundness”, the bank added

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