Heritage Bank is in serious crisis over $32 million debt to the Federal Government which is more than its share capital.
According to reports, the lower chamber of Nigeria’s bicameral National Assembly has threathened to authorize the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for the takeover of the financial institution if the debt is not made.
Adejoro Adeogun, Chairman of the Adhoc Committee on Assessment and Status of All Recovered Loots, Moveable and immovable Assets from 2002 to 2020 by agencies of the federal government for Effective and Efficient Management and Utilisation, issued this threat at the resumed hearing of the committee yesterday.
“I need to send this message to Heritage Bank that we are not comedians here and we are not joking here. If Heritage Bank owes Nigeria more than its share capital, we will not hesitate to ask the National Assembly to write to CBN to take over Heritage Bank.
“They cannot be owing more than their share capital and feel too big to respond to invitations from the National Assembly. Clerk, you have to write them, give them till Wednesday next week. That is the last time we are going to give them,” an angry Adeogun barked.
While the takeover of Heritage Bank might not lead to loss of jobs and customers’ deposits, below is how the financial institution came into being:
IEI Investments Ltd acquired Societe Generale Bank of Nigeria (SGBN), which was licensed by the CBN after meeting all its requirements. This acquisition happened after the bank failed to meet the apex bank’s new capital requirements of N25 billion or $155 million for a national bank.
IEI Investments’ acquisition led to the birth of Heritage Bank, which later returned100% of existing SGBN account holders’ money which was frozen at the bank’s closure by CBN.
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