*Action hasty
*Too many loose ends
*Raises credibility and integrity  question
*Debtors fault CBN
*Banks puncture bank’s EW and non performing loan argument

By Omoh Gabriel, Business  Editor

THE Central Bank of Nigeria appears to be developing cold feet over the war it declared on bank debtors. On Thursday evening, the bank hinted reporters in Abuja that it was about issuing another statement which they suspected was going to be the second list of debtors the apex bank had vowed to release, only for the reporters to be told that the CBN had changed its mind and that the statement was no longer coming.

The CBN’s action on the five banks has generated reactions, claims and counter claims. The apex bank on Thursday took notice of claims by some individuals on the published list of debtors/defaulters that the figures posted against them were not correct and threatened to go to court.

The bank admitted typographical errors in the titles of some government officials and some companies, saying “The general public and all concerned should note that the list published is as at May 31, 2009 and if any of the defaulters/debtors have made any repayments after that date, they should sort it out with the relevant bank.


“The title “accountant general” under Intercontinental Bank Plc list, should read “accountant general of Zamfara State” while the name “Delta State Government” under the Oceanic Bank list, should read “Delta Steel Company.” The Central Bank of Nigeria regrets any inconvenience caused as a result of the typographical errors mentioned. Meanwhile, list of other debtors/defaulters is being compiled and will be published on an on-going basis.”

Bankers speaking on condition that they would not be named, Friday, took exception to the CBN excuse of publishing bank related figures of May in August when it had made it mandatory  for banks to render daily returns of their transactions. The CBN action, they said, meant that it was admitting to Nigerians, that there exists a high level of inefficiency in the apex bank.

They said the CBN had no excuse whatsoever to release such a shoddy list. Bankers also faulted the CBN excuse of the five banks using the expanded window for funding arguing that the window was encouraged by the CBN for banks in need of funding to utilise as it was far cheaper for them to do so because the cost of fund offered by CBN was at eight per cent while inter bank funds was in the region of 12-15 per cent. One source said the CBN used what it created as a trap for the banks.

Sources cited the case of Union Bank with a huge deposit base and non performing loans of N71 billion, saying the bank has the capacity to absorb the loan loss provision. “The CBN has not helped matters by its own admission of errors in its published list of debtors. Its statement is an admission that all is not well in the way and manner it has gone about the entire exercise,”one source said.

Sacked officials of Intercontinental Bank said the bank was never subjected to any special examination and that the special examination was only being conducted now by the CBN. Sources in Oceanic Bank made a similar allegation against the CBN. “The haste with which the CBN conducted the exercise has left so much room for questions and has cast doubt on the real intention of both the Federal Government and the CBN”, sources said.

The affected banks executives are raising fundamental questions such as: Why and how did CBN arrive at five banks? Why did it not complete the examination of all the banks before sanctioning some banks? Does the injection of N100 billion into a bank with capitalisation of over N500 billion justify the take over of the bank?

What is the value of the injection vis a vis the total value of the bank to entitle the CBN to appoint the MDs and other directors of the bank? Did the CBN approve these banks financials all these past years? If yes, what has changed? Were the non-performing accounts put in the books in last three months?

Why did CBN take this decision without regard to the interest of the shareholders? Why should CBN not allow the shareholders to appoint and or remove their directors? How can an MD single handedly appointed by CBN governor serve the interest of the shareholders and not the interest of the man who appointed them?

Debt profiles
Bankers alleged that the sacked managing directors were not given any opportunity to explain their actions and the debt profiles in their books after the examination. If they were given such opportunity, perhaps the misrepresentation of facts contained in the published list of debtors and the amounts they are alleged to be owing the banks would not have risen.

Besides, if the CBN had asked its appointed officers in the bank to compile and up date the list of debtors, the situation would have been different.

The affected banks are also asking the CBN to publish the bad loans or non performing loans of all banks including those that are cleared so that the public can assess how much of this is either to direct loans to government or indirect loans to government through their contractors or other government agencies like PPPMA.

Disagreement at the board  before the announcement Bankers said the CBN action on the five banks did not actually enjoy the total backing of the apex bank’s helmsmen, which may have led to disciplinary action against those who opposed the move.

Some of the sacked banks CEOs
Some of the sacked banks CEOs

As operators and regulators begin to take stock of the tsunami which is bound to change the way big ticket lending and borrowing is done in the industry, unknown developments that characterized the shake-out are beginning to emerge. A sharp disagreement was said to have occurred during meetings called to agree on the action which saw the five bank CEO’s lose their positions.

It was gathered that some of the board members opposed the move, the timing and motive behind it. But with a done-deal stamp on the decision, the said top officials were only playing with their jobs for daring to oppose the move. The next move was their dismissal from their respective positions to which they were appointed earlier in the year. The CBN remained silent on the reason for their removal.

Posers are being raised on whether the apex bank followed the due process in effecting its decisions with many concluding that it was a rush job. Most of the figures released by the Central Bank as debts owed the banks have continued to be faulted. In some cases, others described as non-performing have been discovered to be actually performing although CBN rose sharply on Friday to say only it (CBN) could determine whether a loan is performing or not. Another critical issue is that of one of the banks which has insisted that the CBN actually okayed its accounts only to turn around to do a u-turn.

Available data on the published accounts of the banks from industry study as at March 2009 show an insight into developments in the industry. These data indicate that18 out of the 24 banks operating in the country had a total loan portfolio of N4.4595 trillion.

Total deposit of the banks was N8.0673 trillion. Of the N4.4595 trillion loans and advances in the18 banks four of the sanctioned banks, Union Bank, Intercontinental, Oceanic and Afribank carried N1.3175 trillion of the loans representing 30 per cent of the total loans and advances granted by the18 banks. While the total non performing loans of the 18 banks stood at N239.4 billion out side the margin loans, the four banks’ non performing loans was N 115.3b representing about 45 per cent of non performing loans in the 18 banks.

State of the banks as reported by Afrinvest in March 2009

Afribank: Afriinvest, an institutional investor said, based on March 2008 financial statements, Afribank reported liquidity and capital adequacy levels that indicated emerging strains from rapid growth between 2007 and 2008. By more stringent measures, the bank held barely 11.2 per cent in capital for its gross asset book, with only 15 per cent of total assets being available as cash and FGN securities. Loans constituted 33 per cent of total assets and the group reported N6.3bn in short term equities exposure.

In the opinion of the institutional investor this represented a commitment of about 15.9 per cent of total shareholders funds as at date. Given an inflow of almost N105 billion in new capital during the first half of 2008, expectations are that liquidity and capital adequacy metrics will have improved substantially. Afribank, it said, reported a 57 per cent increase in gross loans, to N116.1 billion in March 2008.

Non performing loans are high, at 13.7 per cent of total loans, albeit having come down from 17.6 per cent in the previous year. “Given the extent of industry-wide loan growth in 2008, and Afribank’s post-recapitalisation drive to increase market share, we note our expectations that these levels of loan performance will not have improved significantly during 2008/2009.

Indeed, given softening economic conditions, and significant volatility across the market for much of underlying customer business, we see little scope for loan quality improvements at the bank, barring major write-downs off capital raised in 2007, and provisions off 2008/2009 earnings”, it said, adding, that Afribank is largely deposit funded, mainly by short-term demand deposits.

It noted a significant skewing of the deposit book towards shorter term liabilities, less than one month, during 2008, matching more closely with asset creation, with historically no less than 80.0 per cent of loans having maturities less than a month. While new capital inflows in 2008 provided an important new source of long-term funding for operations (as well as short-term trading liquidity), we note the bank’s vulnerability, in line with industry standard, to short-term deposit funding, in an intensely competitive market space.

Intercontinental: Afriinvest said Intercontinental was reporting 77.8 per cent of its February 2008 total assets as carrying some degree of risk. Its words: “While loans constituted only 32.8 per cent of total assets, including on-balance sheet money market placements and other assets, excluding cash and FGN securities, as being with some degree of risk, we would estimate shareholders capital to be at 18.5 per cent of total risk assets.

From a liquidity standpoint, assuming a more stringent characterisation of what constitutes liquid assets, we would estimate that 19.4 per cent of February 2008 total assets were liquid mainly cash and FGN securities, equivalent to 25.6 per cent of total deposits.”

Intercontinental Bank reported a N 456.3 billion loan book in February 2008. Historical report  non performing loan ratios have come down significantly, to 3.6 per cent of gross loans in February 2008. Management reports exposure mainly to corporate, commercial, real estate and public sector lending, in approximate order of magnitude. From a sectoral perspective, our understanding is that manufacturing and telecoms constitute the largest sources of loan book exposure for the bank.

Mallam Sanusi Lamido Central Bank Governor (right) and Babatunde Lemo  deputy Governor, Operations, Central Bank of Nigeria at the press briefing  on the managerial restructuring and developments of some Nigerian Commercial banks.
Mallam Sanusi Lamido Central Bank Governor (right) and Babatunde Lemo deputy Governor, Operations, Central Bank of Nigeria at the press briefing on the managerial restructuring and developments of some Nigerian Commercial banks.

Deposit liabilities constituted 89.3 per cent of total non-capital funding for the bank. 73.4 per cent of these deposits in February 2008 were maturing in less than 1 month. As of February 2008, current accounts and fixed term deposits accounted for 92.7 per cent of deposits. We note that other than foreign credit lines for settling off-balance sheet, fully funded contingent liability transactions, the major conspicuous potential source of the reported slow-down in deposit growth would be from customer current and fixed-deposit accounts. Intercontinental reported no major on-balance sheet structured financing from wholesale sources of funding.

Union Bank: Missing out on the window of opportunity to conduct a major capital raise over the last boom cycle, Union Bank reported operating performance in 2008 that adhered to its historical culture of slow, steady, incremental advancement. While much of the market saw volumes at least double in 2007/2008, capital constraints at Union Bank, and a protracted leadership transfer process ensured more moderate growth levels. On this basis, the bank was largely absent from much of the more aggressive risk asset creation that happened over the last 24 months.

Overall, however, we note that as a large bank in its own right, Union Bank is widely exposed to weakening macroeconomic conditions, perhaps more so on account of its less buoyant capital base, and less nimble operating culture. Capital adequacy levels suggest a bank with thin buffers relative to gross risk exposure levels, when measured by our more aggressive definitions of risk.

We note, however, that some of the biggest risks that the bank is exposed to are systemic in nature, with N467.9 billion being outstanding as amounts due to Union Bank from other banks and financial institutions as of March 2008, equivalent to almost 4.0x shareholders capital. These placements represented 41.4 per cent of the bank’s total asset book.

However, placements with non-bank financial institutions amounted to N110.5 billion of this amount. Gross loans came up to no more than 25.9 per cent of assets, with 12.5 per cent of assets being core liquid instruments: such as cash and FGN securities.

As a major net liquidity provider to domestic banks, Union Bank leverages its legacy retail franchise to benefit from interest rate arbitrage opportunities at the short end of the market. With a historical legacy of poor loan performance, and hence less active as a mainstream lender in recent years, the bank appears to have missed out as much on the opportunities as on the volatility that characterised market performance in 2008. Loan quality metrics continue to be troubling at Union Bank.

By our assessment, non performing loan as a share of total loans grew to 24.5 per cent as at March 2008, from 18.7 per cent in the previous year. These are levels significantly higher than any bank within our coverage, and amount to no less than N71.5 billion in absolute value of troubled loans at the bank, equivalent to 60.0 per cent of the banks total shareholders funds. Non performing loans levels have been high historically at the bank, but gross exposure numbers saw a major jump, 109.4 per cent in 2007/2008, within a loan book that grew by barely 60.0 period over the same period.
Dependent on a mix of short term deposits and institutional financing, foreign bank credit lines for funding its operations, Union Bank’s March 2008 balance sheet appeared at once vulnerable to the global financial crisis, with N120.1 billion in amounts due to banks outside Nigeria, and to the domestic liquidity crisis, with N616billion in deposits maturing in less than one month.

These two funding sources were the two major components of the bank’s book of liabilities, at 12.0 per cent and 61.4 per cent respectively. We note that retaining customer deposits, and diversifying away from these two major sources of funding will be a major challenge for the bank in 2009, along with the continuing struggle with credit quality, operational efficiency, innovation and market share retention.” It was gathered that Union Bank had planned twice to raise funds from the capital market but was denied access. It had also planned to sell part of its shares to foreign investors and was not allowed to.

Oceanic Bank: R.Ajibola Oluyede of TRLPLAW, speaking on the position of Oceanic Bank said “Our client is being punished because of its heavy support for the importation of petroleum products, which is an essential commodity, and without such support could have become scarce and result in political upheaval. To ensure that the country has uninterrupted supply of petroleum products banks finance importers of petroleum products. These importers are licensed and duly approved by PPPRA an agency of the government, which issues importers with import quotas based on which it pays subsidies on imports of kerosene and petrol.

Based on amounts advised by Oceanic Bank’s customers, over N20 billion is yet to be paid by PPPRA to these customers’ accounts with Oceanic Bank in respect of LCs dating as far back as December 2008. The bank has fully paid the overseas suppliers whilst PPPRA is over eight months in arrears in reimbursing the bank. There was a letter from the Association of Major Marketers of Petroleum Products to the PPPRA advertised at page 16 of The Punch newspaper of Tuesday, August 18, 2009 which confirms that PPPRA owes members of their association over N70 billion. How are the banks that have in good faith supported the government’s petroleum subsidy programme to be held responsible for the delay by PPPRA to pay” it queried.

According to Ajibola Oluyede “CBN is fully advised of all foreign lines accessed by Oceanic Bank and at no time did CBN advise or caution against these lines. The lines are used to service the domestic economy and are used to finance critical imports like petroleum products. Whilst these positions were open the CBN without warning devalued the currency by N30 to the US dollar; without consideration for the loss implications of the open lines. For a foreign line base of $500 million it translated to a cash loss of N15 billion to the bank.

The attempt to characterise the financing of essential goods including consumables as speculative is wrong, untrue, unfair and unjust. As a result of global meltdown, foreign banks withdrew the foreign lines leading to a funding contraction. Such a funding contraction is obviously not due to mismanagement. This ought to have been predictable and support given to the banks to ensure it did not sharply affect their liquidity.

“The CBN governor said he took the actions leading to the takeover of our client because the CBN was having to guarantee interbank deposits and he read that as a sign that the system was under threat. This is clearly a fallacy. On the contrary a robust interbank system with free flow of fund between banks with shortfall and those with surplus is a crucial part of a healthy banking system.

In times of disruption like those that happened in the situations set out above this market dries up because banks are unable to measure risk. Part of the role of the CBN in such times is to aid market rejuvenation. This is what guaranteeing interbank deposits does. This is exactly what the Bank of England did recently without harm to the system. Infact it is partly responsible for the return of the system to profitability. In our country this was the understanding of the measure and the CBN had already indicated that these guarantees will be withdrawn by March 2010. It is in these circumstances therefore unjustifiable and even irrational for this peremptory takeover 8 months before the set date. Our clients trust in your sense of justice, which we have also advised, is well worth appealing to. We therefore anticipate with gratitude your prompt and decisive response”.

Reasons for CBN action: Some bankers are of the view that the CBN has every reason to intervene in the banking sector only if there is crisis. This time around they say the apex bank has bungled every reason it has adduced so far. The CBN accused the five banks of high level of non-performing loans which was attributable to poor corporate governance practices, lax credit administration processes and the absence or non-adherence to the bank’s credit risk management practices.

Thus the percentage of non-performing loans to total loans ranged from 19 per cent to 48 per cent. The five banks will, therefore, need to make additional provision of N539.09 billion. The total loan portfolio of these five banks was N2,801.92 billion. Margin loans amounted to N456.28 billion and exposure to oil and gas was N487.02 billion. Aggregate non-performing loans stood at Nl,143 billion representing 40.81 per cent.

The huge provisioning requirements have led to significant capital impairment. Consequently, all the banks are under
capitalised for their current levels of operations and are required to increase their provisions for loan losses, which impacted negatively on their capital. The CBN did not give the nation the benefit of the state of each of the banks. It gave a total view of the situation without giving specifics.

Debtors take on CBN: But a number of persons and corporate bodies listed as owing the five banks various sums of money are contesting the amount the CBN claimed they are owing. Among those who reacted to the CBN publication are the chairman of Obat Oil and Petroleum Company, Fredrick Akinruntan, businessman Jimoh Ibrahim and Rockson Engineering Company. Akinruntan described the inclusion of his name in the debtors’ list as embarrassing, claiming that the report did not reflect the reality on ground.

He was accused of owing Oceanic Bank N4.47 billion. He denied owing any unserviceable loan. He said he collected N2.5 billion from the bank to develop a property in Abuja and has never defaulted on the terms he agreed with the bank. Akinruntan said the bank should speak up on his claim. Also, Ibrahim, who is the group managing director of Global Fleet Group, denied owing Oceanic Bank N14 billion. He threatened to sue the CBN for “lying about the amount” involved. In a briefing in his office in Abuja Ibrahim said:
“My company did not owe Oceanic Bank N14. 7 billion. The CBN lied on the figure, a development that has affected the credibility of the CBN’s regulatory function.

“Oceanic Bank, by a letter dated May 18, 2009, had put all the outstanding debts of all Global Fleet Group at N8 billion as the bank acknowledged receipt of N3 billion I paid in May this year. In the letter acknowledging the receipt, the bank had written that ‘the total outstanding on your facilities will be N8 billion.’ He accused the apex bank of unfairness by describing the loan as “non-performing” even after paying N3 billion.

Ibrahim said that “the turnover on the account of Global Fleet Group since inception is over N100 billion and will need Oceanic Bank to do reconciliation and provide evidence of withdrawal to enable us pay.”  Similarly, the management of Rockson Engineering Company said that the funds it allegedly raised from Intercontinental Bank were meant for implementation of the power projects it is handling for the Federal Government, which has failed to release money for the plants.

The projects are the Alaoji (1072MW), Gbarain (225MW), Egbema (338MW) and Omoku (230MW) power stations. Describing the step taken by the CBN as inaccurate and uncalled for, the chairman of Rockson, Senator Anietie Okon, said the firm was indebted to Intercontinental Bank to the tune of N14.4 billion and not N36.9 billion as claimed by the apex bank.

His words: “Specifically, CBN claims that Rockson Engineering Limited is indebted to Intercontinental Bank Plc to the tune of N36, 989, 685, 692.84. For the avoidance of doubt, we like to state that our reconciled and mutually agreed commitment with Messrs Intercontinental Bank Plc is N14, 423, 291, 589.49.”

A statement from Dangote Industries stated inter alia: “We refer to the CBN advertorial in various print publications dated 19th August 2009, listing Alhaji Aliko Dangote as a director and shareholder of Dansa Oil and Gas Limited, a defaulting customer to Intercontinental Bank Plc. We wish to state for the records that Alhaji Aliko Dangote is neither a director nor a shareholder of Dansa Oil and Gas Limited as averred.

This is verifiable through the Company Registration documents held by the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) wherein directors of the said company are listed as: Alhaji Sani Dangote, Alhaji Mohammed Dangote, Mr Ali Dangote. With reference to Dangote Industries Limited’s indebtedness to Oceanic Bank Plc to the value of N2,526,460,000.00, we are in dispute over the charges and are very close to resolution.

A company of our size will take on facilities from bankers and financiers in the course of our business. As a responsible organization, we deliver to our obligations in servicing these loans. “It is on record that our credit rating remains admirable and our bankers have confidence in our ability to meet our obligations.”

Management of Dansa Oil & Gas Limited on its part said “We refer to the advertorial published by the Central Bank of Nigeria, dated August 19, 2009, where Dansa Oil and Gas Limited  was listed as one of the defaulting customers of Intercontinental Bank plc and wish to state the facts as follows: Intercontinental Bank plc in 2007/2008 granted a facility to Dansa Oil & Gas for stock acquisition in the Nigerian capital market.

The facility was used 100 per cent for the purpose it was granted. The funds were disbursed directly to the stockbroker appointed by Intercontinental Bank and the shares were held in trust for the bank inclusive of our own contribution of 30 per cent in cash and shares.

Part of the documents given to Intercontinental Bank to support the loan facility included the mandate to sell without recourse to Dansa Oil & Gas Limited at any point, should the value of the stocks fall below 120 per cent, a right Intercontinental Bank did not exercise till the market fell far below that value.

Given the market situation and having understood the implications of not exercising the right to sell, Intercontinental Bank approached Dansa Oil & Gas Limited on April 28 2009 requesting a meeting. During the meeting Intercontinental Bank proposed a restructure of the facility for a new seven year tenure within which period they expected that the market will have recovered and they will be able to exercise the right to sell. This fresh proposal came with a moratorium period for one year for both interest and principal effective   2009.

SEVEN DAYS:  A Chronology

Compiled by Yinka Kolawole

Friday, Aug 14
*CBN announces sack of five bank MDs for alleged misconduct, appoints new ones

Saturday, Aug 15
* Anxiety mounts over fortune of affected banks
*  Bank executives jittery over disclosures
*  Sanusi says, sacked MDs may go to jail.

Monday, Aug 17
* NSE halts trading on troubled banks’ shares
*  CBN hands over audit report of banks to EFCC
*  EFCC places ex-CEOs under surveillance
* Anxious depositors besiege affected banks

Tuesday, Aug 18
*  CBN releases names of banks’ major debtors
*  CBN guarantees foreign loans of troubled banks
*  EFCC quizzes three sacked bank MDs
*  Akingbola challenges removal in court

Wednesday, Aug 19
*  EFCC issues bank debtors 7-day ultimatum
* SEC queries Okereke-Onyuike over bank debts
* ‘Debtors’ object to CBN list
*  Suspended banks’ shares dip stock market by N380bn
*  Labour faults CBN on phased auditing

Thursday, August 20
* CBN admits errors on debtors’ list
*  Oceanic alleges malice, petitions Yar’Adua
* EFCC insists on deadline
*  Akingbola flees to UK
*  CBN may sell five troubled banks – Sanusi

The first signs of looming trouble

*Stockbrokers finger first generation bank MD, Vanguard Report in March 2009

STOCKBROKERS in the country in  March fingered the managing director of one of the five top banks in the country as the source of the de-marketing going on now in the banking industry. The brokers said the bank boss wanted to promote both his ambition of becoming the next CBN governor and a regional agenda set for him by his sponsors.

According to the brokers, the said top banker “using direct de-marketing antics, big time depositors including state governors and ministers are being harassed with text messages, e-mails and other information devices suggesting that only two banks are healthy in Nigeria today, thereby urging depositors to move their funds away from all other banks to those two banks.” As a result, highly placed Nigerians have been calling on their brokers to disclose to them the true financial position of each of the banks in the country.

It will be recalled that Vanguard last week reported exclusively that anti-consolidation forces have regrouped with the hope of dissembling the banks and forcing a take over of the top five banks in the country. The report had said “The grand plan by the group is to cause panic and uncertainty in the industry and make the target banks look unsafe for depositors.

Their aim, Vanguard gathered, is to cause loss of public confidence in the banking industry and compel the Federal Government to move in by injecting funds. Further, they ultimately plan to instigate government to take equity holdings in the targeted banks.

Vanguard investigations revealed that the group at work is made up of former bank owners who lost out during the consolidation exercise, a powerful clique in the present government, and some aggrieved persons in three of the six geopolitical zones in the country who felt left out in the consolidation exercise.

“Presidency sources disclosed that those who felt left out in the consolidation exercise are grieved and are up in arms to recoup what they felt they lost during Obasanjo years. Part of the plan hatched by the group is to ensure that incumbent Central Bank governor, Professor Chukwuma Soludo does not get a second term. The plan is also to ensure that whatever gains that consolidation had is discredited.

This it was learnt was meant to force the president to act quickly in matter of appointment of a successor to Soludo as they anticipate that the president’s slow move may scuttle their dreams and cause the renewal of Soludo appointment for a second term.” The group’s second game plan is to make Nigerian banks look unsafe in the eyes of the banking public. They have perfected their game by spreading rumour that some categories of banks are unsound and are on the verge of collapse. They send out text messages to individuals and account holders passing wrong information on their target banks.

At the moment the group’ target is two of the high flying new generation banks where they have sent out several messages. Stockbrokers who have been in the eye of the storm over margin loans which banks granted them that have gone bad as a result of the global financial meltdown denied that they contributed in any way to the bad loans in the banks, but rather they were acting on behalf of their clients in all buy and sell contracts in stocks, contrary to an allegation by a first generation bank’s chief executive.

The first generation bank chief executive, the brokers alleged, who is currently vying for the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governorship position, also has stock of loans that have gone bad, while using de-marketing to shore-up his bank’s financial position against its year end which falls due in March. This is also expected to improve his profile against other candidates jostling for the CBN job.

However, the stockbrokers have also identified other banks that have joined in the de-marketing of competitors to cause more confusion in the industry. Thus, no fewer than 13 banks have been mentioned as being distressed at-the last count. It’s believed that over 18 banks have gone to CBN for the expanded discount window money to shore up their deposits and meet customers’ obligation amidst tight liquidity-situation in the industry, arising from de-marketing going on in the industry.

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Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.