Bad Loans: Nigeria Needs Reintroduction Of Failed Bank Act – Ahmed Kuru

Worried by the resurgent huge toxic loans in the banking sector, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), Mr. Ahmed Lawan Kuru today in Lagos called on the Nigerian authorities to revisit the Failed Bank Act so that operatives in the banking sector would be made to account for their actions, just as he urged banks to immediately strengthen their risk management framework to stem the negative growth.

 

Kuru who spoke earlier today when he played host to officials of Risk Management Association of Nigeria (RIMAN) at AMCON Lagos office, said the reintroduction of the Failed Bank Act into the country’s financial system will not only curtail the current trend of financial rascality on the part of some bankers, he said it would bring discipline to the banking industry in general.RIMAN led by its President, Mr. Magnus Nnoka, CRM, the Chief Risk Officer, Coronation Merchant Bank; were in AMCON on a business visit.

 

Having been privileged to have been on both sides of the divide – as a banker and now on the regulatory side, Kuru explained that given the huge resources that are available to financial institutions and the pivotal role they play to the development of the economy makes it mandatory for financial institutions to take the issues of risk management seriously to prevent what happened during the global financial crisis. He suggested that in line with the fight against corruption, there was also need to fight against impaired and arranged credits so that operators are held responsible for booking credits contrary to their credit policy, that go bad under their supervision.

 

Reiterating that one of the reason for the failure of the banking system during the global financial crisis of 2008/2009, which eventually led to the creation of AMCON was because of the prevalence of weak risk management framework by financial institutions, Kuru said that the trend became a baggage, which contained all sorts of bad omen for the economy including poor corporate governance structure, lack of robust risk management strategy and lack of adherence to laid down principles that govern credit approvals by financial institutions.

 

He added, “I have been on both sides, therefore, I can authoritatively comment on issues relating to risk management. Immediately after the intervention of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in 2009, they insisted that risk management must be given prominence right from the Board level to the account officer. What we have noticed now is the lack of consequent framework to manage the risk structure. We have noticed prevalence of key men risk. Credits are booked with impunity without any intentions of being paid. The grievous impunity is taking place along the credit process. There is the urgent need to revisit the failed bank act so that operatives become responsible for their actions. We believe it will bring discipline to the banking industry.”

Kuru who said the damage financial institutions do to the economy when they book fictitious loans was worse than corruption added, “AMCON is currently sitting on huge stock of non-performing loan, with banks looking for liquidity to book more loans. As practitioners, you need to join the campaign to bring sanity in own credit process. You can clearly see that the system is skewed towards accommodating large credits, which pose serious survival challenges to the financial institutions on failure. Whilst the small credits/SME always require regulatory intervention to be accommodated. Given what I have seen in AMCON, we must bring both the obligors and the operators to account for the bad credits.”

 

Mr Magnus Nnoka, CRM President, RIMAN, Chief Risk Officer Coronation Merchant Bank (standing 6th from left) andManaging Director/Chief Executive Officer, Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), Mr Ahmed Lawan Kuru (standing 6th from right) in a group photograph with officials of AMCON and  Risk Management Association of Nigeria (RIMAN)when the latter paid AMCON MD/CEO a business visit in Lagos on Wednesday

 

Financial expert advocates new opportunities for generating more VAT

A financial expert, Dr Samuel Nzekwe, has emphasized the need for government to perfect new opportunities of generating more Value Added Tax (VAT) in the country.He made the suggestion in an interview with source in Ota, Ogun state, South-West Nigeria.Nzekwe spoke against the backdrop of the Federal Government’s move to increase the VAT in order to meet the demand of the new N30,000 national minimum wage in the country.Nigeria’s Minister of Budget and Planning, Mr Udo Udoma, had said the Federal Government is planning to increase the nation’s VAT to 50 percent from 2 percent to meet its challenge.Nzekwe, also a former President, Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN), said increasing the nation’s VAT would not solve the revenues challenge, instead it would contribute to inflation rises in the country.“The Federal

Inland Revenue Service (FIRs) has not been able to capture all people into the VAT net.“A lot of people in the country are not paying VAT. More people are paying taxes without VAT due to poor compliance on the FIRS officials.“What they should have done is to get more people to pay VAT,’’  he said.Nzekwe noted that compliance was the major problem with the provisions of VAT because of its poor management.The ex-ANAN president suggested that the FIRS should redouble its efforts to ensure that more people were captured into the VAT net in order to boost the nation’s revenues.He also said increasing VAT was an indirect way of inflicting pains and shortchanging Nigerians, which was not good for the economy.

Ecobank Academy and International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) join hands in an effort to boost effective and sustainable leadership capabilities

Ecobank (www.Ecobank.com) is proud to announce that its prestigious Ecobank Academy will be training 150 senior leaders of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) from 45 African countries this week to strengthen their leadership skills with regard to helping the communities they serve.

 

The IFRC is leveraging its partnership with Ecobank to upscale its capabilities through training to enhance its work in local communities. The three day ‘IFRC Africa Region Leadership Forum’ training course is being provided by the Ecobank Academy. The Academy delivers world-class management development courses and is the first pan-African corporate university as well as being one of the largest capability development centres in Africa.

 

The aim of the course is ‘Building African National Society leadership to be proud of’ and it will include training on leadership skills, leading National Societies effectively, partnership management, governance and responsibility, risk management and controls, sustainability, integrity and transparency, youth and gender engagement and the opportunities of digitization.

 

Simon Rey, Group Head, Ecobank Academy and Carl Manlan, COO of Ecobank Foundation, said: “The Ecobank Academy and Ecobank Foundation have worked closely with the IFRC to devise training courses for their national leaders covering key leadership skills such as governance, accountability and sustainability. We have built a strong relationship with the IFRC and it is hugely gratifying that we can play a role in their impactful work supporting suffering communities.”

 

Dr. Fatoumata Nafo-Traoré, IFRC’s Regional Director for Africa, commented: “At the IFRC we recognise that leadership is about solving problems. The training that our African leaders will receive from the Ecobank Academy will successfully position them to devise solutions to the challenges they face. Ecobank’s support in this, and in many other ways, is proving to be an invaluable asset in our work to address health, disasters and crises affecting communities throughout the African continent.”

Ecobank and the IFRC signed a partnership agreement in November 2018 to work closely together to empower local communities to cope with disasters more efficiently. In addition to providing training, Ecobank is leveraging its digital banking and QR code capabilities to boost IFRC’s fundraising. Initiatives on behalf of IFRC National Societies by Ecobank’s affiliate companies have seen the setting up of digital membership records and enrolment processes, Ecobank staff volunteering to help in communities facing crisis, and the receipt of First Aid training from IFRC volunteers

NITDA to boost foreign direct investment

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) says it will explore ways to boost Foreign Direct Investment in the country.The Director-General of NITDA, Dr Isa Pantami stated this in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, when a delegation from the Embassy of the United States of America in Nigeria paid him a visit.Dr Pantami also said both countries will discuss the 2013 Nigerian Guidelines on Local Content Development in ICT.He therefore urged the Tech giants to come to Nigeria and domesticate their businesses, products and services, adding that NITDA is committed to working with stakeholders to move the country’s IT sector forward.On his part, the leader of the delegation and the Deputy Economic Counsellor, Mr Michael Carney appealed on behalf of top US Information Technology Companies for a soft, friendly regulation to allow for investment in Nigeria’s IT sector.

FG Committed to Capital Market Growth – Ahmed 

The Federal Government has again stated it’s commitment towards building a vibrant capital market that would contribute to the growth and development of the country.

Minister of Finance, Mrs Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed, said this In Lagos Tuesday at the Maiden Awards Night of the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC tagged ‘Committed Partnership’ .

According to Ahmed, Capital markets play a central role in the development of the economy through mobilisation of long term savings for investment as well as efficient pricing of financial instruments 

She said over the years, the capital market has provided platforms through which corporates and governments source for capital to expand their operations and provide amenities for its citizens 

Speaking further on economic development, Ahmed said Nigeria is making a lot of efforts in diversifying the economy, raising revenues and blocking leakages, as well as also making a lot of efforts to in ensuring mobilisation of resources to aid investment in small and medium enterprises and provide infrastructure. 

The Minister commended the awardees for contributing  in significant ways towards achieving the over  100 initiatives contained in the master plan adding that she cannot but further  appreciate their commitment and contributions to actualise the master plan. 

She expressed delight that the  main thrust of the plan aligns to the vision of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, ERGP for the financial services sector saying that when the ERGP was being prepared, copious references were made to the 10 year master plan.

She disclosed that the ERGP vision  for the financial services sector is to strengthen relevant market institutions and mitigate risk by building a healthy and competitive financial system that is better positioned to support private sector and contribute towards the sustainable development of our economy. 

“Indeed, just as the Capital Market master plan, the ERGP policy objectives for the financial sector is to further diversify instruments of the stock market, review the capitalisation of the financial institutions and encourage lending to the real sector of the economy and encourage of the economy 

“All of these are necessary for us to be able to create jobs, wealth and increase the standard of living of our people and the capital market is central to all of these efforts. I want to urge all of you here today to continue to partner with the government in its bid to achieve policies that it is committed to in the ERGP”

“As the ERGP recognises the power of the capital market to drive its own forms, CAMMIC is today proven to be an embodiment of this recognition” she added.

Ahmed therefore commended the Market participants for coming together to co-operate with the regulator to formulate the plan and implement the master plan  in Impactful manner as shown by the results shown so far In diversifying and growing the market.

In her welcome address, Acting Director General of SEC, Ms. Mary Uduk, said the event was put together to appreciate the tremendous support and collaboration the Commission has received from market operators and various stakeholders in the capital market which has advanced collective aspiration to accelerate the growth of the market and contribute to the development of the nation’s economy.

She said the implementation of the 10 Year Capital Market Master Plan commenced in earnest under the guidance of the Capital Market Master Plan Implementation Council Chaired by Mr. Olutola Mobolurin. 

“ I am very pleased to state that we have made great strides in our implementation efforts.

We have taken up the initiatives outlined in the Master Plan document in a systematic manner while also painstakingly engaging with the government, its agencies and other critical stakeholders whose support and collaboration is required to achieve the objectives outlined in the Master Plan” she added.

 

Recall that the ten year capital market master plan which was launched in 2014, has the aim to position the Nigerian capital market for an accelerated development of the national economy.

Boeing chairman Experience Sadness on Ethiopian Airlines, Indonesian plane crashes, reveals plans

Dennis Muilenburg, Chairman, President and CEO, The Boeing Company, has expressed sadness over the Ethiopian Airlines and Indonesian plane crashes.

The two accidents occurred within nineteen weeks.

While the Ethiopian Airlines’ Boeing 737 MAX 8 from Addis Ababa to Nairobi went down on March 10 2019 killing all 157 passengers and crew 6 minutes after take off, Lion Air’s Boeing 737 MAX 8 crashed into the Java Sea 12 minutes after takeoff, killing all 189 passengers and crew on October 29 2018.

 

In a statement on Tuesday, Muilenburg said: “The tragic losses of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 and Lion Air Flight 610 affect us all, uniting people and nations in shared grief for all those in mourning. Our hearts are heavy, and we continue to extend our deepest sympathies to the loved ones of the passengers and crew on board.

 

“Safety is at the core of who we are at Boeing, and ensuring safe and reliable travel on our airplanes is an enduring value and our absolute commitment to everyone. This overarching focus on safety spans and binds together our entire global aerospace industry and communities.

 

“We’re united with our airline customers, international regulators and government authorities in our efforts to support the most recent investigation, understand the facts of what happened and help prevent future tragedies.

 

“Based on facts from the Lion Air Flight 610 accident and emerging data as it becomes available from the Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 accident, we’re taking actions to fully ensure the safety of the 737 MAX. We also understand and regret the challenges for our customers and the flying public caused by the fleet’s grounding.

 

“Work is progressing thoroughly and rapidly to learn more about the Ethiopian Airlines accident and understand the information from the airplane’s cockpit voice and flight data recorders. Our team is on-site with investigators to support the investigation and provide technical expertise. The Ethiopia Accident Investigation Bureau will determine when and how it’s appropriate to release additional details.

 

“Boeing has been in the business of aviation safety for more than 100 years, and we’ll continue providing the best products, training and support to our global airline customers and pilots. This is an ongoing and relentless commitment to make safe airplanes even safer.

 

“Soon we’ll release a software update and related pilot training for the 737 MAX that will address concerns discovered in the aftermath of the Lion Air Flight 610 accident. We’ve been working in full cooperation with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, the Department of Transportation and the National Transportation Safety Board on all issues relating to both the Lion Air and the Ethiopian Airlines accidents since the Lion Air accident occurred in October last year.

 

“Our entire team is devoted to the quality and safety of the aircraft we design, produce and support. I’ve dedicated my entire career to Boeing, working shoulder to shoulder with our amazing people and customers for more than three decades, and I personally share their deep sense of commitment.

 

“Recently, I spent time with our team members at our 737 production facility in Renton, Wash., and once again saw firsthand the pride our people feel in their work and the pain we’re all experiencing in light of these tragedies. The importance of our work demands the utmost integrity and excellence—that’s what I see in our team, and we’ll never rest in pursuit of it.”