MD CEO NDIC Umaru Ibrahim
From James Emejo in Abuja
The Nigeria Deposit Insu-rance Corporation (NDIC) has said it did not order the closure of accounts belonging to the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) in both Oceanic Bank and Mainstreet Bank (formerly Afribank).
Media reports (not THISDAY) on Tuesday had alleged that officials from the corporation had swooped on the affected banks and closed the accounts belonging to CPC based on "orders from above."
But the NDIC, in a statement issued yesterday, described the reports carried by four dailies as completely false and capable of misleading the public.
The statement, signed by the Head of Corporate Communication, NDIC, Malam Hadi Birchi, said: “The correct position is that on the 22nd of August, 2011, the NDIC received a petition dated the 16th day of August, 2011 from the law firm of Aliyu Marama & Co. of No. 33 Lingu Crescent, off Aminu Kano Crescent, Wuse II, acting as solicitor to Senator Rufa’i Sani Hanga, Alhaji Badmos Mutalif, Abduldulwahab Adebajo Adeleke and Chief Denis Aghanya, the National Chairman, National Secretary, National Financial Secretary and National Publicity Secretary respectively, of the CPC.
“The petitioner alleged that the accounts of the CPC which their clients opened in 2010 at Mainstreet Bank Limited, UAC Building, First Bank Plc, Area 3, 2nd Branch, Garki and Oceanic Bank Plc, Maitama Branch, all in Abuja were being operated by signatories other than their said clients and all their efforts to get the affected banks to explain their action had not been successful. They therefore appealed to the corporation to intervene in the matter.”
The corporation said that in Pursuance of its statutory powers as supervisor of the affected banks, it dispatched its examiners to investigate the complaint with a view to determining the appropriate measures to take to resolve the matter.
“The NDIC Examiners visited the banks concerned on Monday, September 5, 2011 to commence investigation and their report is being finalised. However, the NDIC did not at any time close the accounts of the CPC at those banks as falsely reported by the four newspapers. Rather, part of the findings of the NDIC Examiners was that withdrawal from the account of the CPC at First Bank Plc was suspended by the bank following its policy which stipulates such procedure for any account wherein a dispute arises between officers and directors of the account holder.”
It added: “The CPC was duly notified of this development by the bank vide letter dated August 25, 2011 which the CPC acknowledged on the same date. Furthermore, information available to the NDIC indicated that as at 5th September, 2011 when the NDIC Examiners commenced investigation at Mainstreet Bank Limited and Oceanic Bank Plc, the accounts of the CPC in those banks were still in operation.”
It said as a supervisory authority, the Corporation would continue to ensure that all relevant laws and regulations governing banking operations were duly complied with, including procedures involving the closure of customers’ bank accounts in insured depository institutions.