In a move to save itself from getting swamped by the ‘INEC bribery scandal, the management of Fidelity Bank has announced the appointment of a new CEO for the bank.
Mohammed Lawal Balarabe, the bank’s director for the northern region has been announced as the acting CEO of the bank. According to a statement by the bank, his appointment is to take effect with immediate effect.
The EFCC recently secured a court injunction to further keep Nnamdi Okonkwo, the former CEO in their custody pending the conclusion of their investigation.
As quoted by the The Nation newspaper, the EFCC said “very soon we will arraign them in court. Some of them have admitted that they shared out of the bribe sum. Having recovered more than 408.7 million from some of the beneficiaries of the slush funds, we are set for trial“.
The agency further hinted on its move on the bank saying “As for the bank, it even refunded 49.7 million profit made from the deal. With this, the culpability of the bank is in not doubtful at all.”
Where Could The Bank Have Erred
According to the CBN’s rule, all banks are “required by the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Regulations, 2013 (as amended) to forward their AML/CFT Compliance Manual to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for off-site review of the document as well as carry out enhanced customer due diligence for high risk customers and effective Know Your Customer (KYC) processes”.
Fidelity Bank however refuted that it did not report the deposit to appropriate authorities. In a statement the bank released last week, it argued that “We can confirm that the transactions were duly reported as required by the regulators and the Bank is cooperating fully with the authorities on the investigation.”
Fidelity Bank is a tier 2 bank with over 3.4 million customers and about 400,000 shareholders.
Featured image: The Nation