Forex Offences: CBN Got 7 Banks Penalized, Receives N1bn Fine.

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Following the default of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Seven Deposit Money Banks out of others have  paid a total of N1,088,334,000 as fines to the Central Bank of Nigeria, Securities and Exchange Commission, National Insurance Commission, Pension Commission and others in the 2022 financial, according to findings.


This was disclosed in the financial statements of the banks for the year 2022, which were filed on the Nigerian Exchange Limited.



The financial services firms included in this report are Access Holdings Plc, Wema Bank Plc, Union Bank of Nigeria, Guaranty Trust Holding Company, FCMB Group Plc, Fidelity Bank Plc, and Stanbic IBTC Holdings.


Some of the infractions the lenders were sanctioned for ranged from mismatched details on accounts, foreign exchange guidelines contravention, late rendition of monthly returns, late rendition of daily returns, publication of unapproved adverts, and unethical conduct, among others.


In the period under review, Access Bank paid a total of N604m to the Central Bank of Nigeria. The details included a N2m paid to the CBN in respect of the breach of accounts’ administration agreement on March 11, 2022. On July 11, the bank paid another N2m for wrong account opening with mismatched details.


On December 8, 2022, the bank said it paid N100m and N500m, respectively fine for contravening regulatory guidelines on forex.


For Stanbic IBTC Holdings, a total of N159m (Dec 2021: N233m), was paid as fines during the year across its business interests.


For Fidelity Bank Plc, a total fine of N100.71m (2021: N85.33m) was paid during the year 2022 to the CBN.


The fines include an infraction in respect of cryptocurrency, which was N85.71m; late returns, N5m; and an employment infraction, N10m.


The CBN had in February 2021 warned local financial institutions against having any transactions in cryptocurrencies or facilitating payments for crypto exchanges.


The FCMB Group reported being fined N2m for the contravention of CBN AML & CFT regulations and the Bank and Other Financial Institutions Act in respect of lack of proper (KYC) due diligence on a customer, who is a beneficiary of cyber fraud incident.


Another contravention of the CBN guidelines in respect of late rendition of monthly returns attracted a fine of N5m.


Meanwhile, FCMB Pensions Limited paid a N63.30m fine imposed by PenCom for unethical conduct and demarketing of another Pension Fund Administrator.


The penalties for the FCMB Group totalled N70.3m (31 December 2021: N723.31m).


Union Bank in its annual financial statements said it paid fines of N20m in all to the CBN (2021: N207m) over failure to obtain the CBN approval for prospective employees sale of assets. Both infractions attracted N10m each.





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