By Babajide Komolafe
The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) yesterday vowed to protect the interest of depositors of defunct Fortis Microfinance Bank (MFB).
The Corporation stated this yesterday in a statement signed by its Director for Communication and Public Affairs, Dr. Sunday Oluyemi, assuring that all depositors with funds in excess of the insured limits will be paid.
The Corporation disclosed that Fortis MFB collapsed as a result of mismanagement and abysmal corporate governance practices.
It added that the CBN released N2 billion to pay depositors of the troubled Fortis MFB, adding that the payment was meant to ease the hardship of the depositors before the bank’s license was revoked.
The statement added that the statement became necessary in view of a complaint by a businesswoman, Mrs Uju Ohanenye, who accused the Corporation of failure to pay the balance of N222.4 million out of the fixed deposit of N301 million she lodged with Fortis Microfinance Bank (MFB) Plc
It said: “Contrary to her insinuation and accusation that the Corporation allowed Fortis MFB’s Management to defraud customers and had been negligent in the discharge of its duties, the NDIC wishes to make the following clarifications:
“Mrs. Ohanenye approached the Fortis MFB’s IMC and was paid a total of N74.703 million only in two tranches of N18 million and N56.703 million respectively.
“While the first tranche was for the treatment of her ailing husband, the second tranche was paid from the N2 billion approved for the IMC by the CBN in order to ease the hardship experienced by depositors.
“Subsequently, Mrs. Ohanenye was paid another sum of N200, 000 which she was entitled to after the liquidation of Fortis Microfinance Bank (MFB) Plc. “It is essential for Mrs. Ohanenye and other depositors to be properly advised that microfinance banks were established to provide affordable banking services to the economically “active poor”, that is, the low income individuals and enterprises, as a way of promoting financial inclusion.”