CBN takes over Skye Bank, ap­points new chair­man, MD

Daily Trust - - FRONT PAGE - From Sun­day Michael Ogwu & Nu­rudeen Oye­wole (La­gos)

The Central Bank of Nige­ria (CBN), yes­ter­day, took over the oper­a­tions of the Skye Bank due to the bank’s fail­ure to meet its min­i­mum thresh­olds in crit­i­cal pru­den­tial and ad­e­quacy ra­tios.

Shortly be­fore it an­nounced the dis­so­lu­tion of the bank’s board, the chair­man, nonex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tors, man­ag­ing direc­tor, his deputy and two long­est serv­ing ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tors vol­un­tar­ily re­signed their appointments, CBN said.

The CBN Gov­er­nor, God­win Eme­fiele, who an­nounced the dis­so­lu­tion of the board, yes­ter­day in La­gos, dis­closed that Skye Bank’s liquidity and non-per­form­ing loan ra­tios have been be­low and above the re­quired thresh­olds, re­spec­tively, for quite a while, cul­mi­nat­ing in the bank’s per­ma­nent pres­ence at the CBN Lend­ing Win­dow.

The CBN an­nounced the se­lec­tion of Al­haji Muham­mad K. Ah­mad as the new chair­man while Mr Adetokunbo Abiru was ap­pointed the new Man­ag­ing Direc­tor.

“The more re­cent ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tors will be al­lowed to re­main to en­sure con­ti­nu­ity and a smooth tran­si­tion,” it said.

De­spite the takeover, the apex bank said that the Skye Bank was not in dis­tress and re­mained a healthy bank.

Eme­fiele said CBN took the de­ci­sion to pre­vent a to­tal col­lapse of the fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tion, adding that the “Skye Bank should be do­ing much bet­ter than it is right now, we have seen about the op­po­site in re­al­ity,”he said.

The bank is thought to have an es­ti­mated non-per­form­ing loan port­fo­lio of N700bn, much of which was due to an over­ex­po­sure in the oil and gas sec­tor.

The bank, about a year ago, ac­quired 100 per cent stakes of Main­street Bank from the As­set Management Com­pany of Nige­ria (AMCON) but it was yet to re­lease its 2015 fi­nan­cial year re­port.

The CBN boss said that the Skye Bank has been given enough time to set its oper­a­tions right be­fore tak­ing over its management.

Mr Ah­mad has about 35 years ex­pe­ri­ence and was the pi­o­neer direc­tor-gen­eral of the Na­tional Pension Com­mis­sion.

Mr Abiru, a Har­vard Busi­ness School grad­u­ate, has about 26 years bank­ing ca­reer ex­pe­ri­ence and was an ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor, cor­po­rate bank­ing, be­tween 2013 and 2016.

Mean­while, a group un­der the aus­pices of Iduwin Vol­un­teers Force (IVF), has asked Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari to sack the Mr Eme­fiele over an at­tempt to ‘wind up’ oper­a­tions of Skye Bank Plc and some other banks.

Speak­ing, the IVF leader, “Com­man­der” John­son Bi­boye, yes­ter­day, said that the CBN’s take over the banks was “an anti-peo­ple” pol­icy.

Re­call that the CBN had in a let­ter dated Jan­uary 22, 2016, signed by its Direc­tor of Bank­ing Su­per­vi­sion, Ben­jamin Fakunle, asked the banks to bring 10 per cent of their paid-up cap­i­tal per direc­tor be­fore De­cem­ber 31, 2016.

The group in ref­er­ence to the let­ter asked the pres­i­dent to pre­vail on the CBN to with­draw the direc­tive, won­der­ing how six months be­fore the ex­pi­ra­tion of the order the CBN de­cided to sack the management of Skye Bank.

CBN Gov­er­nor, God­win Eme­fiele

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