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Terrorist Financing: Banks Meet over Plan for Nationwide Shutdown

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National Union of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions Employees (NUBIFE) said it will meet today to discuss the planned shut down operations nation wide in protest over the continued detention of key officers of about 18 banks by the Department of State Services over allegation of money laundering.

Shola Bodurin, senior assistant general secretary of NUBIFE who confirmed the move, also coindenmmed the continued detention of the bankers.

Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions (ASSBIFI), has already commenced investigation on the matter.

It will be recalled that some senior personnel of Nigerian banks have been languishing in detention in the holding facility of the Department of State Services for two weeks over allegations of terrorist financing and money laundering alleged by government functionaries to have been perpetrated by Aminu Suleiman Lamido, son of Jigawa State Governor, Alhaji Sule Lamido.

Aminu and his brother, Mustapha Lamido were arrested by Economic and financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, over an alleged N10 billion fraud.

They were arrested in Kano and flown to Abuja and have since been under interrogation at the Commission’s headquarters.

The banks whose staff have been picked up are Fidelity Bank Plc, First City Monument Bank Plc, FCMB, Wema Bank Plc, Access Bank Plc, Skye Bank Plc, First Bank Nigeria Limited, FBN, Sterling Bank Plc, Diamond Bank Plc, Zenith Bank Plc, Unity Bank Plc, Ecobank Plc, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, GTBank, and Citibank. The DSS, it was learnt, which has been on the trail of Aminu Lamido, had sought an ex parte motion from the Federal High Court, Abuja, to freeze the accounts, in 13 banks, of Adold Engineering Company Limited, believed to be owned by the governor’s son.

The ex parte motion was granted by Justice A.F.A Ademola on November 6, 2013.

The fear of the banks, it was gathered, was that the DSS had no capacity to analyse information sent daily to CBN and EFCC related to money laundering.

They argue that banks on daily basis send report on suspected money laundering activities to the CBN and the EFCC.

“An order is hereby made freezing the accounts of the underlisted corporate body and financial institutions in the banks (1st 14th respondents) indicated against their names for their suspected involvement with acts of terrorists= financing and money laundering.

“An order is hereby made compelling the 2nd to 14th respondents (the banks) in this case to deliver up and furnish the State Security Service/applicant in this case with the respective bank statements and mandate cards of the 1st (Adold Engineering) and 2nd respondents (Fidelity Bank) in this case.

“An order of the Honourable Court is hereby made keeping the above listed accounts frozen until the conclusion of investigations. The ex parte order of the court made is to last for one month from date of service on the respondents with liberty to party(ies) to comply to this court as they deem fit within the said period.”

A bank chief Executive said that in some of the above banks, the chief inspectors were picked.

According to the bank executive who do not want his name in print, last week in one of the banks the Department of State Security officials visited the head office under the guise of inviting the officials to their Lagos office, but unknown to them they were flown in military aircraft to Abuja. Since then no one has been allowed access to the officials.

In one of the first generation banks an Executive Director was picked. Among those being detained by the Department of State Security are Bank Treasurers, head of Information Technology and other key officers whose day to day activities in the banks are key to the operations of banks. The absence of such key officers is causing the banks a lot.


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E-Financial

Stanbic IBTC, Standard Bank, Listed Among Top African Corporate Brands

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Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC and its parent company, Standard Bank, have emerged amongst the top winners of the 2020 Tech Times’ Africa LinkedIn Corporate Brand Awards.

The Stanbic IBTC Group emerged the second position in the category, with total votes of 3,515, out of 24 firms nominated for the award. Standard Bank placed the fourth 2,494 votes.

Nominations for this award opened to the public on July 1, 2020 and closed on July 14.

Shortlisted nominees were announced on August 24 while voting commenced immediately and voting ended on September 8, 2020.

The Corporate Brand Awards was instituted by Tech Times’ Africa, an online platform for leading technology, innovation, and startup stories.

Expressing his delight on the awards, Dr Demola Sogunle, Chief Executive, Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC, said that both Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC and Standard Bank had been deliberate and consistent in making a remarkable impact in Africa’s financial sector.

“Our sincere appreciation goes to the organisers of the Africa Corporate Brands Awards and to every member of the public who voted. This is a reflection of the high level of trust and confidence that the public has reposed on us,” he added.

Dr Sogunle further said that Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC would remain relentless in portraying the organisation as one of the most influential corporate brands in Africa.

He stated: “Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC and Standard Bank have relentlessly contributed to driving the growth and development of the African financial ecosystem. These awards affirm our efforts, and we are encouraged to raise the bar continually.”

The Africa Corporate Brand Award is designed to identify and recognise outstanding companies. It also projects their achievements and impacts on African society and the world at large.


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NAICOM Urges State Governments to Implement Compulsory Insurance

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The National Insurance Commission, NAICOM, is seeking collaboration especially from State Governments on implementation and enforcement of compulsory insurance.

Speaking during a meeting with the Governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi, the Commissioner for Insurance Sunday Thomas, noted that over the years, the Commission has embarked on series of programs aimed at a nationwide massive public enlightenment with respect to compliance with the laws on compulsory insurance.

As a subset of the Financial Services Industry, Insurance industry is a pivot to guarantee the sustainability of growth and development of the State and its people, said Thomas, adding, We have therefore noted the necessity to plant “Insurance” and “People” at the center of any equation that tends to create, enhance, sustain and manage growth and development in any economy.”

He said: “As a people, human activities have associated risks and in spite of every precautionary measure to avoid the occurrence of losses or damages, the unexpected still occur.

“In consequence of the losses the victims are prone to sufferings which in many cases may lead to total impoverishment of a large proportion of those affected. To ameliorate the situation of victims, laws have been put in place for an arrangement that will ensure that victims and especially third parties are adequately compensated.”

According to him, “the objectives of protecting third parties and relieving the government of the avoidable burden of compensation from the meagre wallet of the government led to the enactment of various laws on compulsory insurance products”.

Thomas listed the Compulsory Insurances to include, all buildings under construction that are more than two (2) floors (builders liability); all Public Buildings including Schools, offices, hotels, hospitals, markets (occupiers liability) etc; Group Life Insurance for all Employees of both Public and Private Sectors; Professional Indemnity for all Medical Practitioners and Third Party Motor Vehicle Insurance in respect of death, injury or damage to the property of third parties.

The Commissioner added that it is on the strength of the above that the Commission is seeking collaboration with the State government in the enforcement of the above mentioned compulsory insurances in the State.

“As the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum there is no better place to start the campaign than Ekiti State.” he said.

He also highlighted the benefits of this collaboration with State Governments, which include, Financial Compensation to the families of insured citizens who may become victims of a disaster through loss of their properties or become disabled in event of occurrence of insured accidents/disasters, robust group life insurance policy made compulsory by the Pension Reform Act 2014 gives hope to the workforce who will be ready to go extra mile in carrying out assign duties knowing fully well that the employer has made provision for the dependant in event of the unexpected and creation  of employment opportunities for citizens of the State.

Others are provision of grants and Fire-Fighting Equipment for the States’ Fire Services by NAICOM from the Fire Fund as stipulated in the Insurance Act 2003, reduction in the government expenditure in event of disaster that may affect the citizens of the State by shifting the burden to the risk-bearers (Insurance Companies), free Insurance and Risk Management Education and Enlightenment programme for the citizens of the State; and creation of additional source of internally generated revenue (IGR) for State Government in collaboration with your relevant Ministries and Agencies.

He therefore appealed to the Governor to graciously consider the benefits of the proposed collaboration for the enrichment of the State and the sustainability of the Nigeria economy at large.

The Commissioner also requested the Governor to domesticate the compulsory insurances in the State and create a structure that can be supported by NAICOM in the enforcement of the compulsory insurances and also nominate an Agency of the Government that will serve as liaison office with the Commission in this collaboration.

“The nominated agency may be requested to work with the Team of the state who shall be dedicated to this collaboration and recommend appropriate measure to domesticate the enforcement of the compulsory insurances in the State.” he said.


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CBN Disburses N3.5tr COVID-19 Intervention Cash

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Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had disbursed N3.5 trillion to different sectors of the economy to cushion the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic.

CBN Disburses N3.5tr COVID-19 Intervention Cash

Mr. Godwin Emefiele, CBN governor

It will also contribute N1.8 trillion into the N2.30 trillion Federal Government’s one-year Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP) through its Participating Financial Institutions (PFIs).

Godwin Emefiele, CBN Governor stated this on Tuesday after the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting in Abuja.

Emefiele gave a breakdown of who got what out of the N3.5 trillion COVID-19 intervention as follows: Real Sector (N216.87 billion); COVID-19 Targeted Credit Facility (N73.69 billion); Agri-Business/Small and Medium Enterprise Investment Scheme (N54.66 billion); Pharmaceutical and Health Care Support (N44.47 billion); and Creative Industry Financing (N2.93 billion).

Under the Real Sector Funds, Emefiele said: “a total of 87 projects that include 53 manufacturing, 21 agriculture and 13 service projects were funded.

He added: “In the health care sector, 41 projects which include 16 pharmaceuticals and 25 hospital and health care services were funded.”

The CBN boss also said: “Under the Targeted Credit Facility, 120,074 applicants received financial support for investment capital.

“The AGSMEIS intervention has been extended to a total of 14,638 applicants, while 250 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), predominantly the youth, have benefited from the Creative Industry Financing Initiative.”

Emefiele said in addition to  the  initiatives, the   apex bank “is set to contribute over N1.8 trillion of the total sum of N2.30 trillion needed for the one year  ESP, through its various financing interventions using the  PFIs.”


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