Full statement of Emefiele’s dismissal from the board of directors of FBN Holdings – Nairametrics
STATEMENT BY THE GOVERNOR OF THE CBN ON THE CHANGE OF MANAGEMENT PRESENT AT FIRST BANK OF NIGERIA LTD
1.0 Hello ladies and gentlemen.
2.0 The media have been inundated with comments about the alleged leadership changes at First Bank of Nigeria Ltd (FBN) and the related regulatory investigation by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to the board of directors of First Bank of Nigeria Limited. So it became necessary for me to address the public to dispel any misconceptions.
3.0 Normally, the board of directors is vested with the authority to make changes to the management team subject to the approval of the CBN. However, the CBN sees itself as a key player in the management changes involving FBN due to abstentions and the Bank’s close monitoring over the past 5 years aimed at stemming the decline in the bank’s going concern.
It was therefore surprising that the CBN learned from media reports that the board of directors of FBN, a systemically important bank subject to a regulatory forbearance regime, had made sweeping changes in executive management without commitment and / or notice to regulatory authorities. FBN board action sends negative signal to market about stability of leadership in board and management and it was in light of the above that CBN questioned the board directors on the bank’s unfortunate developments.
4.0 As you may be aware, FBN is one of the systemically important banks in the Nigerian banking sector given its historical importance, the size of its balance sheet, its large customer base and its high level of interconnection. with other financial service providers, among others. According to our latest assessment, FBN has over 31 million customers, with a deposit base of 4.2 billion naira, shareholder funds of 618 billion naira, and an instant payment processing capacity (PIN) NIBSS of 22. % Of the industry.
For us at CBN, not only is it imperative to protect minority shareholders, who have no voice to express their views, but it is also important to protect the bank’s more than 31 million customers who see NBF as a refuge for their savings.
5.0 The bank maintained healthy operations until fiscal 2016, when the CBN’s target review found that the bank was in dire financial straits with its capital adequacy ratio (CAR) and capital adequacy ratio. non-performing loans (NPLs) that significantly violate acceptable prudential standards.
6.0 The bank’s problems have been attributed to poor credit decisions, large and non-performing insider loans, and poor corporate governance practices. The bank’s shareholders and FBN Holding Plc also lacked the capacity to recapitalize the bank to minimum requirements. These conclusions stem from various requests from the CBN to recapitalize themselves.
7.0 The CBN stepped in to stabilize the bank in its quest to maintain financial stability, especially given the systemic importance of NBF as listed above. The regulatory actions taken by the CBN in this regard included:
I. Change of management team under the supervision of the CBN with the appointment of a new Managing Director / Managing Director in January 2016.
ii. Granting of regulatory waivers to allow the bank to pay off its non-performing loans with a write-off of at least 150 billion naira from its income for four consecutive years.
iii. Granting of a concession to borrowers initiated to restructure their non-performing credit facilities under very strict conditions.
iv. Renewal of abstentions on an annual basis between 2016 and 2020 after in-depth monitoring of the progress towards the end of the abstention measures.
8.0 The measures yielded the expected results as FBN’s financial situation gradually improved between 2016, when the forbearance was initially granted for the current fiscal year. For example, profitability, liquidity and CAR have improved while NPLs have significantly decreased.
9.0 Despite the significant improvement in the bank’s financial situation with a positive trajectory for financial soundness indicators, insider facilities remained problematic.
10.0 Insiders who took loans in the bank, with a dominant influence on the board of directors, did not comply with the terms of the restructuring of their credit facilities, which contributed to the bad financial position of the bank .
The recent CBN target review as of December 31, 2020 found that insider loans were materially non-compliant with restructuring terms (e.g. non-perfection of lien on shares / collateral agreements) for more than 3 years despite several regulatory reminders. The bank also did not dispose of its unauthorized holdings in non-financial entities in accordance with regulatory guidelines.
11.0 Following a further review of the situation and in order to preserve the stability of the bank, in order to protect minority shareholders and depositors, the management of the CBN in accordance with its powers under BOFIA 2020 has approved and hereby orders:
I. Immediate removal of all directors of FBN Ltd and FBN Holdings Plc.
ii. The appointment of the following persons as directors of FBN Ltd and FBN Holdings Plc
1. President – Rémi Babalola
2. Dr Fatade Abiodun Oluwole
3. Kofo Dosekun
4. Rémi Lasaki
5. Dr Alimi Abdulrasaq
6. Ahmed Modibbo
7. Khalifa Imam
8. Sir Peter Aliogo
9. UK Eke – Managing Director
1. President – Tunde Hassan-Odukale
2. Tokunbo Martins
3. Uche Nwokedi
4. Adekunle Sonola
5. Isioma Ogodazi
6. Ebenezer Olufowose
7. Ishaya Elijah B. Dodo
8. Sola Adeduntan – Managing Director
9. Gbenga Shobo – Deputy Managing Director
10. Rémi Oni – Executive Director
11. Abdullahi Ibrahim – Executive Director
12.0 The CBN hereby reassures the bank’s depositors, creditors and other stakeholders of its commitment to ensuring the stability of the financial system. There is therefore no need to panic the banking public, given that the actions taken are aimed at strengthening the bank and positioning it as a giant in the banking sector.