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MTN now closer to final resolution on CCI issue with CBN but…—Minister

Brighter chances are underway on the amicable resolution of the breaches bordering on Certificate of Capital Importation (CCI) by MTN Nigeria against the extant laws and regulations of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed has said.
Giving a fresh insight on the recent sanction imposed on MTN Nigeria Communications Limited by the apex bank at the 24th Nigerian Economic Summit in Abuja on Tuesday, Mrs. Ahmed revealed that the company only provided what the CBN requested after the bank ordered it and four banks to refund about $8.1bn.
Viewing the act as taking the institution of the CBN and its regulations for granted, she was quick to aver that efforts at resolving the matter is getting to a conclusion after all.
Though she was mute on any move so far on withdrawing the substantive suit filed by the telecoms giant to which the apex bank had equally filed a counterclaim, the Minister decried that “The MTN incident was a very damaging one for us and that was one of the reasons why we have been out trying to engage our investors. But you see there is a tendency for big businesses to take regulation and government for granted.
“Only after that incident happened, all of the information that the CBN had been trying to get for months actually came out. Now, I think they are up to a point where they have almost solved the problem.
“And this is information that the CBN governor had personally met with MTN, with the key banks involved and had asked them to provide the information,” the minister noted.
Zainab stated that “It was an audit that took place over the course of two and a half years and the auditors were not satisfied with some of the information.
“They queried and they asked for additional information. Unfortunately, this was negative for us but is now being sorted out and we are bearing the cost of it. We have been engaging investors and trying to explain what is happening.”
She revealed that both the government and relevant regulatory agencies are working towards making sure that such breaches do not reoccur in future, saying “We are continuously discussing with the regulatory authorities and there will be no company next after MTN. Nobody is next because we just can’t afford this kind of incidence to happen.”
Business Hilights recalls that the CBN had on August 30, imposed heavy fines totalling N5.87bn on four banks under its regulatory purview for alleged illegal funds repatriation
CBN further directed the management of the banks and MTN Nigeria Communications Limited to immediately refund to the apex bank $8,134,312,397.63, which was said to have been illegally repatriated by the company.
According to the CBN, the illegality of the international transfer stemmed from the fact that MTN did the transfer without recourse to the statutory final approval of the necessary CCI as provided by the law.
Already, the apex bank had swiftly debited accounts of the affected banks with the fines while talks with MTN are still ongoing both in and out of the court ahead of peaceful settlement.