Nigeria’s United Bank of Africa, Fidelity Bank, Access Bank, Guarantee Trust Bank, and First City Monument Bank have paid out N1.4bn as fines for various infractions against the regulations of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Security Exchange Council, and Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria, in the first half of the year.
This figure was arrived at from an analysis of the H1 2021 financial statements of the banks obtained from their websites.
Findings show that the penalties were as a result of contraventions and infractions of guidelines instituted by the Federal Government through the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act, relevant CBN circulars, and other regulatory requirements, according to a PUNCH newspaper report.
The BOFIA Act is a regulatory framework that was introduced to guide the financial industry. The Act which was first enacted in 1997 empowers the CBN to implement its provisions.
In the period under review, GTB paid a total sum of N692m as penalties to regulators for two major infractions bordering on foreign exchange transactions carried out by Betting and Gaming Companies (N690m) and non-refund of interest on the debit of non-interest related charges to non-funded accounts (N2m).
For forex trade infractions and other forex infractions, risk-based supervision between 2018 and 2019 and late returns, Fidelity bank paid the sum of N64.1m to the CBN during the period under review.
According to the financial reports, Access Bank was fined N184.5m by the CBN while SEC fined the bank N1m during the review period.
UBA incurred regulatory sanctions of N278m in H1 2021, N287m lower than the sum of N565m incurred in H1 2020.
Meanwhile, FCMB Group’s penalties rose from N150.2m paid to regulatory bodies in H1 2020 to N162.3m in H1 2021.