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Heritage Bank safe, CBN tells customers to disregard trending report

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Contrary to a report released earlier in the week that Heritage Bank was in distress and unable to discharge its obligations to depositors, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has brushed the report aside, saying the bank is strong to continue business.

A statement issued by the Acting Director, Corporate Communications Department, Mr. Isaac Okoroafor, said that Heritage Bank was not in distress and called on depositors to disregard the reports.

The statement read in part, “The attention of the CBN has been drawn to false and malicious stories on the social media insinuating that Heritage Bank is under financial distress and therefore unable to discharge its obligations to its depositors.

“We wish to state that Heritage Bank is not in distress and, as such, its depositors should go about their transactions without fear. For the avoidance of doubt, we wish to further state that no Nigerian bank is in distress.

“The CBN, as the industry regulator, has a duty to depositors, in particular, and the economy in general, to ensure the soundness of all financial institutions.

“We, therefore, wish to assure all depositors of the safety of their deposits.”

CBN further noted that “The CBN also wishes to state that it will remain alive to its responsibility of ensuring banking system stability and soundness through constant monitoring and supervision of all licensed institutions.

“The CBN wishes to reiterate that the banking system remains resilient enough to weather the current economic storm.”

Apart from the CBN’s statement, Heritage Bank has also reacted saying it will continue to meet its obligations to customers.

The bank said while it acknowledged the challenging operating environment currently being experienced in all sectors of the economy, it remained financially stable and had continued to discharge its obligations to all customers and stakeholders.

The bank said “This position is buttressed by the commendable results posted by the bank in the past financial year and the last three quarters of 2016, resulting in shareholders’ approvals to list its shares on the Nigerian Stock Exchange within one year of its business combination with the erstwhile Enterprise Bank Limited.

Leading online news channel, Saharareporters, had on Monday reported that Heritage Bank was currently stuck in a debilitating liquidity situation, quoting faceless sources as saying that the bank was unable to meet customers’ immediate withdrawal requests and had wiped out all foreign currency domiciliary accounts through physical theft of cash by the bank’s directors.



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