Illegal transfer: Senate clears MTN Nigeria, Stanbic IBTC Bank might face sanctions

Illegal transfer: Senate clears MTN Nigeria, Stanbic IBTC Bank might face sanctions

Nigeria’s upper legislative chamber, the Senate has approved a report that clears MTN Nigeria of any wrongdoing in the transfer of over USD14 billion out of Nigeria.

The Senate’s report said ““There was evidence of massive capital outflow but that fact alone is not conclusive that a crime has been committed.”

It would be recalled that MTN Nigeria was alleged to have illegal transfers out of Nigeria without following required laws and paperwork.

However, the Senate called on the Central Bank of Nigeria to sanction Stanbic IBTC Bank, a tier 2 lender, because of the bank’s sloppy paperwork in the funds’ transfer.

The bank was noted in the report to have carried out “improper documentation in respect of capital repatriation and loan repayments”.

A spokesperson for MTN Nigeria told Reuters News that “We welcome the report. We will study it in more detail. As we’ve placed on record previously, we have always insisted that our actions have been compliant with the law in this regard.”

Stanbic IBTC Bank has not made a comment on the matter.

South Africa’s MTN Group owns MTN Nigeria, the country’s largest mobile carrier with about 50 million subscribers. The NGN330 billion regulatory fines paid by the company and Nigeria’s recession had hampered its revenue prospect leading to the group’s first-ever loss in 20 years.