Economy

Settle Your Debt, Avoid Take Over- Shareholders Urge Etisalat

Some shareholder groups in the nation’s capital market on Tuesday urged telecoms giant- Etisalat Nigeria to settle the $1.2bn debt owed 13 commercial banks to avoid take over.
The groups in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos insisted that the company must settle the debt to enable the banks meet their dividend obligations.
Boniface Okezie, National Coordinator, Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria (PSAN), called on Etisalat to settle the debt, or risk the possibility of receivership.
He stated that the banks had obligations to their shareholders in terms of dividend payment at the end of the financial year, noting that, the debt must be paid.
Godwin Anono, Chairman, Nigeria Professional Shareholders Association, also urged the telecoms giant to settle the debt, instead of making unnecessary noise about the whole thing.
Anono said the transaction was in line with customer-bank relationship, noting that, terms and conditions must be obeyed, stressing that: “When you borrow money from the bank, you must pay up at a stipulated time.”
He agreed that the banks had obligations to their shareholders and depositors, which is why, he continued the shareholders would support the banks should they decide to acquire Etisalat if it fails to settle the loan.
“This is like any other transaction, its not government business and I stand on existing protocol that the banks should acquire the company,” he added.
INVESTDATA News had on March 29, 2017, reported Sir Sunny Nwosu, National Coordinator emeritus of the Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), had during the annual general meeting, wondered why the apex bank continues to seemingly protect Etisalat that is a private concern like so many others in the economy whose loan agreement went awry.

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