The management of Diamond Bank Plc, on Monday informed shareholders through the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has debited its account to the tune of N250m, being fine levied over “irregular” foreign exchange remittance on behalf of MTN Communications Limited.
Diamond Bank is one of the four fingered following a 30-month investigation of illegal repatriation of $8.13bn through issuance of the “irregular” Certificates of Capital Importation (CCI) on behalf of the telecom giant.
On its part, MTN Nigeria has been directed to refund the $8.13bn in exchange for the Naira equivalent.
A statement by Uzoma Uja, Diamond Bank’s Company Secretary, while insisting on its innocence, argued that its officials “carried out the subject transaction in full compliance with all rules, regulations and guidelines,” but has promised to continue engaging and cooperating with the CBN by furnishing it with every information necessary.”
It assured “that the payment of this fine does not impact our capacity to offer normal banking services, nor out clients’ ability to access these, including transactions that have to do with capital importation.
“The bank will continue to uphold its high standard of compliance with the laws of the land.”
Besides Diamond Bank, others whose accounts were debited for a total of N5.7bn following involvement in the forex repatriation are: Standard Chartered Bank, Citibank; and Stanbic IBTC Bank, whose parent company- Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc, earlier reported to the NSE that its account was debited for the N1.8bn fine by the CBN. A further breakdown shows that Standard Chartered was fined N2.4bn; while Citibank received a N1.2bn slap.