The Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) is marking its 30th anniversary in a grand style on Monday in Abuja.
The NDIC was established in March 1989 following the promulgation of Decree No. 22 of 1988, now replaced with NDIC Act 16 of 2006.
To mark this event, the company is organising a public lecture & book presentation with the topic: Emerging Risks and Corporate Governance Issues In Banking.
The event, which will be held at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, is expected to have Vice President Yemi Osinbajo as its guest of honour.
Other guests expected are the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.
The NDIC, which is charged with the responsibility of protecting depositors money and deepening of the stability of the nation’s financial system, lined up activities to celebrate its achievements in the past 30 years as well as give honour to its founders who have left a legacy of excellence in service and commitment to the stability of the financial system.
The first activity was a special anniversary prayers during the Juma’at Prayers at the National Mosque in Abuja on Friday. This was followed by an Anniversary Health Walk and Novelty Football Match between the Corporation and Debt Management Office (DMO) staff the following day.
A Special Anniversary Thanksgiving Service was held on Sunday at the National Ecumenical Centre, Abuja.
A highlight of the anniversary celebrations will be the NDIC 30th Anniversary Public Lecture/Book Presentation which will be crowned by the Anniversary Dinner later on Monday.
There will also be various commemorative activities taking place in Lagos and all NDIC Zonal Offices which include visits to orphanages.
PREMIUM TIMES brings to you live updates on events at the NDIC 30th anniversary celebration.
Some dignitaries have arrived at the congress hall of the Transcorp Hilton Hotel. Notable amongst the dignitaries is the Emir of Kazaure, Najib Adamu.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is expected to arrive any moment from now.
The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, has just arrived at the venue.
Other dignitaries such as the acting chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, and Minister of State for Labor and Employment, Festus Keyamo, have also arrived.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, is represented by Victor Nwokolo, the Chairman of the House Committee on Banking and Currency.
Most dignitaries are now seated, waiting for the arrival of the vice president, Yemi Osinbajo, for the programme to commence.
The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, and heads of some federal agencies such as PENCOM, CBN and AMCON are present at the venue.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has arrived the venue.
The Event will be kick started with the national anthem, followed by a welcome address by the MD/CE of NDIC, Umaru Ibrahim.
Also in the entourage of the vice president is the Senate president, Ahmed Lawan.
Standing ovation as Ebere Young, the MC of the event, ushers in Nigeria’s vice president, Yemi Osinbajo, who is the special guest of honor at the event.
Mr Young is renowned especially in the cooperate sphere for handling huge events like this. He has deep communication skills with a perfect touch of humour.
Mr Young in 2014 received the prestigious award of the Member of the Federal Republic (MFR) by President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.
Earlier, the MC took turns to introduce many bigwigs in the Nigerian political and cooperate field who graced the anniversary.
They included Babatunde Fashola, a lawyer and currently the Federal Minister of Works and Housing; and Festus Keyamo also a lawyer and minister.
Until September 24, 2019, Mr Keyamo was appointed Nigeria’s Minister of State for Niger Delta, before he was redeployed to Ministry of Labour and Employment by President Muhammadu Buhari barely a month after his initial appointment on August 21.
Also in the building is Ifeanyi Ubah, a senator.
Many former board members of the NDIC, politicians, traditional rulers, chief executives, and top officials in the Nigerian banking sector and professional institutions are all tucked inside the congress hall inside Transcorp Hilton hotel in Abuja, the venue of the event.
The arrival of the vice president heralds the commencement of the event.
As the main entrance of the congress hall was shut, the MC asks that the invitees stand for the national anthem.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has taken a quick exit from the hall. He however promised to be back and stay till the end of the event.
The Ooni of Ife, Adeyeye Ogunwusi, takes the stage to deliver his address. Coincidentally, today happens to be his birthday.
He gives a humorous joke of how the NDIC MD was the senior of Emir of Kazaure in secondary school. The audience bursts out in laughter when he said he hoped he was not flogged back then in school.
“Without the staff of this great institution, there will never be NDIC. On this note, I want each and every one of us here to give them that honour by making all our deposits secured,” he says.
“We know that we are not there yet, but gradually we’ll get there,” says the Ooni of Ife.
He urged the Senate president and Speaker of the House of Representatives to correct the NDIC law.
“Let us use this ceremony to give more respect to an average depositor.”
“There are only two things that unite Nigerians, one is football and the other is NDIC. Everywhere you go to, you must find the NDIC logo,” says the moderator.
Emir of Kazaure takes the stage to deliver his address.
These are the highlights of a welcome address given by Umaru Ibrahim, the Managing Director of the NDIC:
Mr Ibrahim takes turns to observe protocols by recognising the presence of various dignitaries at the occasion.
Umaru Ibrahim is the Managing Director of the NDIC, an agency he joined in 1989 as a Deputy Director and a Departmental Head in charge of Financial and Technical Support, one of the key operational departments of the Corporation then.
Having served in several departments in the cooperation for over two decades, Mr Ibrahim was on December 8, 2010 appointed the Executive Head of the NDIC.
Mr Ibrahim holds a master’s degree from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. He has led several reforms, including the repayment of N1.45 billion to 16,324 depositors of 34 closed Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) in 2017.
The NDIC boss reiterates that the event is holding to mark the 30th year anniversary of the cooperation as well as commemorate the launching of the book on monitoring distress in the banking sector, “EMERGING RISKS AND CORPORATE GOVERNANCE ISSUES IN BANKING”.
He takes the audience through what the NDIC has achieved in the last 30 years, dividing them into three phases.
In the first decade, the NDIC boss said the agency provided improvement in corporate and financial assistance in the banking sector.
He said the corporation provided oversight management on 33 banks whose licenses were revoked by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
In the second, he said the corporation was involved in resolving the issue with banks whose licenses were revoked.
The NDIC provides a safety net for depositors in the liberalised banking sector.
It was established in 1988 and operates under the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation Act (1990).
A parastatal under the Ministry of Finance, the corporation is charged with protecting the banking system from instability occasioned by runs and loss of depositors’ confidence.
The NDIC complements the regulatory and supervisory role of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), although it reports to the Ministry of Finance. It advises the CBN in the liquidation of distressed banks and manages distressed banks’ assets until they are fully liquidated.
After the CBN in 2002 issued a notice revoking the licence of Savannah Bank, saying the bank did not have enough assets to meet liabilities and did not comply with CBN obligations, the NDIC took over as liquidator – sealing the bank’s offices. The matter dragged through the courts, with the bank’s owners eventually being awarded damages of N100 million in February 2009.
Meanwhile, depositors were left suffering because they have not been able to recover their monies trapped in the bank since they were liquidated.
Apart from Savanah Bank, depositors in the defunct Fortis Micro-Finance Bank, and Aso Savings & Union Homes among others are also suffering same fate.
PREMIUM TIMES last year reported how the NDIC blamed its establishing act for its inability to repay depositors funds trapped in the aforementioned liquidated banks.
Mr Ibrahim said though the establishing act was reviewed in 2006, there are several other issues that are yet unresolved.
He wants the Act to be reviewed again.
He said the suffering of the depositors would continue unless the NDIC’s enabling Act was speedily amended by the National Assembly.
He said the last 10 years were characterised by accelerated financial inclusion in Nigeria.
The address by the Emir of Kazaure continues:
“I was out of the country when the NDIC sent me this invitation, when I came back, I was shown the letter and I told my secretary that this is a must go.” – Emir of Kazaure
“The MD was my prefect in school, I was in form 1 while he was in form 5, he was a very tough person.”
The Emir of Kazaure tells the audience that he was once a banker before ascending the throne of Emir.
“I was a banker when the banks were all analogue and manual,” he says.
“When I was in the banking sector, we were more scared of the NDIC inspectors more than the CBN because they were much more thorough.”
The Emir of Kazaure on the podium
Highlights of an opening address by Ronke Sokefun, Chairman NDIC board:
Ronke Sokefun, a consummate lawyer, Chartered Secretary and Land administrator, outlined the public policies of the NDIC.
She said the NDIC was intentionally designed to protect small investors against financial risks.
She said the corporation has engaged in supervision and liquidation of banks that did not meet criteria set by the CBN.
The board chair said the process helped in reducing financial risks for depositors and ensuring safety nets.
She said the corporation in conjunction with CBN has tackled the multitude of challenges and risks investors face in the banking sector.
“We handled distressed financial institution,” she noted.
The official highlights how the NDIC has repaid several depositors whose monies were trapped in closed and liquidated banks that their licenses were revoked.
She said the agency paid N8.2 billion to thousands of depositors whose monies were trapped in liquidated banks.
PREMIUM TIMES last year reported that the NDIC said it paid N1.45 billion to 16,324 depositors of 34 closed Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) in 2017.
Depositors in banks such as Savannah and other Micro Finance banks are yet to receive their trapped monies since their bank licences were yet to be revoked due to protracted litigation.
Last December, the Senate confirmed Mrs Sokefun as the board chairman of the NDIC.
Also, five others who were confirmed as members were; Festus Keyamo (Delta, South-south), Garba Bello (Sokoto, Northwest), Brig Gen Josef Okoloagu (Enugu, Southeast), Mustapha Adewale Mudashiru (Kwara, North-central) and Adewale Adeleke (Ondo, South-west).
Governor of Kano State, Abdullahi Ganduje, in his remarks said the people of Kano are grateful to NDIC.
Shehu Haruna, a former commissioner in the state who represented the governor, said the people of Kano appreciate the partnership between the state and NDIC.
He said this is a time to reflect on the challenges and consolidate on the landmark achievements of the agency.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, regretted his absence. He said he was engaged in another event outside Nigeria.
Represented by Victor Nwokolo, chairman of the house committee on banking and currency, the speaker said he urged the NDIC to produce the blueprint of notorious debtors in the banking sector.
He said the NDIC is the safety component of the financial sector in all countries.
Senate President Ahmed Lawan while giving his remark said the NDIC and NASS have something in common: oversight.
He said when he received the invitation, he decided that the least the National Assembly will do for the NDIC is to be present at the event.
On the request by the Ooni of Ife that the NDIC Act be amended, the Senate president said, “The Ooni of Ife moved a royal motion; when there is such motion, we don’t need to put it to question.”
“Kabiyesi, your motion has received a yes, the ayes have it.”
He said the National Assembly will expedite action when the plenary resumes.
“When we resume plenary, the NDIC Act Amendment Bill will be a top priority.”
“We’ll work closely with NDIC to provide that amendment that will make you stabilize the banking system,” he said.
Mr. Lawan said the National Assembly will give an accelerated hearing to the NDIC amendment act.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo just stepped back into the venue after a short exit to attend to other engagements.
A mini documentary is being aired on the achievements of NDIC.
Earlier, Godwin Emiefile, CBN governor, gave a goodwill message.
Mr Emiefele, who was represented by an official of the CBN, explained how the CBN has cooperated with the NDIC to sustain a resilient financial inclusion in Nigeria.
Finance Minister, Zainab Ahmed, also sent in a goodwill message.
She was represented by Okon Udom, the director of finance. Mr Okon said the minister was unavoidably absent because she was attending an event in the U.S.
He read her goodwill message starting wit observation of protocols.
Mrs Ahmed said the rationale behind the establishment of NDIC was to create financial safety nets.
She said the corporation improved cooperation with other agencies working on improving financial safety nets in Nigeria.
She lauded the NDIC for enhancing the revenue base of the country by ensuring compliance with fiscal acts and operations.
The official said over N207.71 billion remittances have been brought into the government coffers through the corporation.
She also said the agency has enhanced financial inclusion. “I believe, it will do more in years ahead”, she said.
Lecture by Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede
A retired President of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Aig-Imoukhuede, is a Nigerian banker and co-founder of Access Bank Plc with Herbert Wigwe.
He is also the founder and Chairman of Coronation Capital Nigeria Limited and the Africa Initiative for Governance (AIG). He is the Co-Chairman of the United Kingdom-Nigeria Capital Market Task Force.
Mr Aig-Imoukhuede was conferred with Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON) in 2011 by then President Goodluck Jonathan of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, for his contributions to the development of banking and finance. He was also awarded the National Productivity Order of Merit Award in 2009.
The frontline banker starts his lecture by outlining the mortality rate of Nigerian banks. He said banks fail because of poor cooperate governance and management.
He said the NDIC was introduced to protect Nigerians when banks fail and is liquidated. He said NDIC have done well in discharging their duties.
The access bank boss said his lecture will interrogate how banks have fared in governance and risk management.
Corporate governance is at the heart of how businesses are run. According to the Organization for Economic Cooperative Development (OECD), “corporate governance involves a set of relationships between a company’s management, its boards, its shareholders and other stakeholders”.
Corporate governance, broadly speaking, includes board efficiency, transparency, reporting requirements, investor communications and sustainability.
Corporate governance includes rules and practice guiding such matters as selection of the board and management, roles and responsibilities of a board, the oversight functions of a board over management, shareholder rights, accounting and reporting, and sustainability issues including relationship to host communities, consumers and general public, etc.
Corporate governance standards in an organization are typically based on macro factors at play in the country where a company operates including the country’s legal and financial system, corporate ownership structures, and cultural, economic and political realities. In Nigeria, where corruption is rife and endemic, corporate governance practices are usually lax.
Failures in the banking sector exposed in the Sanusi post consolidation era have been attributed to poor corporate governance including poor credit risk management practices, conflicts of interest in lending, false reporting, etc.
However, current economic realities like the globalization of capital flows have rendered ethical relativism, the doctrine that morality exists in relation to culture or society, an unsound basis for setting corporate governance standards.
He said before the introduction of the NDIC, the CBN has been doing oversight functions in co-operating governance and risk management of banks in Nigeria.
He said the CBN and NDIC joint efforts even improved the push for adequate and sanctioning of overlaps in cooperate governance in banks.
He said the banking sector understands gender balance and there are three women chairpersons of three prominent banks in Nigeria.
He also points out to the fact that the NDIC board chairperson is also a woman.
Mr Aig-Imoukhuede lauds the pioneer chairman of the NDIC for leading “a revolutionary regulation of co-operate governance in bank”. He said the impact of the regulatory sanction made banks fear the regulators.
He uses Singapore to illustrate how strong corporate governance regulation can create a strong financial environment.
The official said one of the challenges regulators face in managing risks and supervising corporate governance is the limited capacity of personnel.
He said the CBN and the NDIC have been investing more in training to improve the capacity of supervisors of banks.
The banker said the system on the ground is “fragile” for risk management.
He takes the crowd through the 2008 banking crisis in Nigeria.
He lists key issues that resulted in the crisis.
They include: the devaluation risk; loans secured by capital market insurance; crash in oils prices; poor liquidity management; over exuberate growth in the banking sector that started in 2003.
The banker said the failure of banks to manage their own growth ultimately laid to the crisis especially after they recieved bailouts from AMCON.
He sad the regulators (NDIC) had good reasons to be intrusive into the operation of banks then.
“Linking governance to risk management and making boards responsible is the duty of the regulators,” he said.
Dr. J.G Donli mounts the podium to review the book: thirty years of deposit insurance system in Nigeria.
Dr. Donli in his review stated that the book gives a thorough understanding of how NDIC works.
“You will know the reasons of establishing NDIC and the values it has created in the past 30 years.”
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is now invited to the podium to deliver his remarks.
His citation is being read by Dr. J.G Donli, Former Director of research, NDIC.
The official discarded the current regulatory system in the country is outdated.
“The regulatory capacity we have today is built for yesterday. We need to build the one for today and tomorrow because the stakes has gone up.”
He said we are not ready for the risks for tomorrow “because things will be different by then”.
He stresses the need for data analysis and interpretation of data.
This he said paid off in averting a major banking crisis in Nigeria in 2018.
He said Nigeria was acknowledged for having a world class response to the crisis then.
However, the banker notes that the banking sector is fraught with various financial challenges especially after the economy went into recesion in 2016.
“We are still struggling with growth.
“The invisible hands cannot address these challenges today”, he notes.
The assess bank boss said operational risks is the biggest challenge today.
He said there is complete talent scarcity in Nigeria.
“There are whole departments that were lost in banks during crisis. When you have a fragile banking system threatened by uncertainties created by Trump, Brexit and Naira failure, you need to be prepared”.
The banker projects that in the next three years, the biggest banks in Nigeria will be bigger than the country’s annual budget.
“In three years’ time, a small deposit bank will have access to one trillion nairas while bigger banks will be able to assess 10 trillion. The biggest banks in Nigeria will be bigger than our national budget.”
He said as the banks are getting bigger, the challenges are multiplying, hence the need for improving good governance and handling of financial risks in the banking sector.
The lecture ends.
The Vice President in his remarks stated the the Chairman of the NDIC, Ronke Sokefun was his student in the university.
He expressed his gratitude to NDIC for what he described as the kind invitation.
“I must also join others who have already commended the NDIC for professionalism and gaining international respect for itself and Nigeria.”
“Let me again congratulate the NDIC of 30 years of exemplary practice.”
“We pray that the next 30 years will be more glorious would be more glorious.”
The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo proceeds to unveil the book: thirty years of deposit insurance. He is being flanked by honorable ministers and other dignitaries.
The event has come to an end as the Executive Director, Operations of NDIC, Aghatise Erediauwa mounts the podium to give a vote of thanks.
He appreciated the Vice President, traditional rulers, ministers and other invited guests for their presence.
“The caliber of visitors we have received today makes this vote of thanks not too easy.”
“We have been fortunate to have our invitation accepted by so many international visitors.”
The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo proceeds to unveil the book: thirty years of deposit insurance. He is being flanked by ministers and other dignitaries.