Stakeholders in the financial sector, including the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN; Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit; Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, AMCON; the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC have thrown their weight behind the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) amendment bill 2022. The decision was at a public hearing organised by the Senator Uba Sani, led Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions. In supporting the Bill, the apex bank said “CBN would have recommended that this Bill should take a bow and go, if bills are allowed to do so, since it “supports financial system stability”. Represented at the hearing by Kofo Salam-Alada, the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele commended the Senate committee for its “complete understanding of issues in the banking sector and the financial sector in general”.
The Nigerian Financial and Intelligence Unit (NFIU)’ s representative, Kingsley Amanko told the gathering that the NFIU sees the NDIC as a crucial, institutional and regulatory ambit that is indispensable the fight to ensure the safety and reliability of the Nigerian financial system, thus a desirable partner and a collaborator. He said, “The NFIU is a central national agency responsible for the receiving of financial disclosures from reporting entities, analyses these disclosures and produce intelligent reports for dissemination to competent authorities. On part, the Chairman of EFCC, Abdulraheed Bawa who was represented by the Director Legal and Prosecution, Chile Okoroma who noted that anti- graft agency supports the bill, however observed that “section 71 (3) takes away the discretionary powered of the court to award general damages and said the court can only award special damages”, adding “this is not fair”.
The EFCC also observed that section 73 (1), which also takes away the “inherent power of the court to decide whether to grant a stay of any proceedings commenced with relation to insured institutions which have been taken over before the corporation takes proper responsibility of liquidation”. This he said erodes the discretionary powers of the court and should be looked at again. Other stakeholders that supported the bill were National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), Trade Union Congress (TUC), Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN), Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) and National Association of Micro Finance Banks (NAMFB). In his remarks, the Managing Director of NDIC, Hassan Bello who welcomed the amendment to the NDIC Act, said that the law came into force in 1988 and was only amended in 2006, just as he expressed appreciation to all the stakeholders for the support, adding that the current amendment will go a long way in protecting depositors’ money.
In his remarks, Chairman Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Instructions, Senator Uba Sani, who also sponsored the amendment bill equally expressed happiness about how the proceedings went at the public hearing, just as he expressed the confidence that the input from the stakeholders will enrich their report to the Senate plenary and eventual passage of the bill.