BoI allays fears over N11b loan

The Bank of Industry (BoI) has said that the N11b owed it by 53 debtors will be fully recovered irrespective of litigation by some of the debtors.

The Managing Director of the Bank, Olalekan Pitan said the recovery drive has already begun.

The House of Representatives has however requested the Bank to furnish it with details of the recovery of the debt.

The query for the debt was raised by the 2015 Auditor General’s report.

At the resumed hearing of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) Friday, Pitan said the bank had complied with the directives of the Auditor General of the Federation (AGF) on the recovery of the debt.

In compliance with the directives of the AGF, Pitan said the recovery efforts began immediately with the publication of the names of the debtors in three national newspapers.

He said: “In addition, we have recovered some money; some of the companies were reported to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for recovery.

“Also, some of them have subjected the recovery to litigation while the property of some of them are on the verge of being sold.”

Asked to provide exact figures recovered so far, as well as the names of the companies that have taken the bank to court, Pitan said he could not provide the details at the sitting as he had to consult his records.

On the N2.7b YouWin fund domiciled with the bank for disbursement since 2012, Pitan said the bank could only access N870m out of which N129m was returned to the treasury through the Treasury Single Account in 2015

Chairman of the Committee, Kingsley Chinda said the House was worried about the huge debt that could affect the objectives of the bank meant to boost the economy.

In his response, Pitan, who recently assumed office as MD of the Bank said though the debt appeared huge, the bank was prepared for such developments.

Saying that the bank will not relent in recovery the debt fully, Pitan added, “The bank is not under duress, this does not in any way threaten our business.

“We are rated and in a healthy position”.

The Committee also requested the bank to furnish it with the details of transactions on the YouWin programme.

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