BANKS AND OTHER FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS ACT

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

PART I

Banks

Establishment of Banks, etc.

SECTION

  1. Functions, powers and duties of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
  2. Banking business.
  3. Application for grant of licence.
  4. Investment and release of prescribed minimum paid-up share capital.
  5. Power to revoke or vary conditions of licence.
  6. Opening and closing of branches.
  7. Restructuring, re-organisation, merger and disposal, etc., of bank.
  8. Operation of foreign banks in Nigeria.
  9. Minimum paid-up share capital of banks and compliance with minimum paid-up share

capital requirement.

  1. Shareholder’s voting rights to be proportional to shareholding.

11. Restriction of legal proceedings in respect of shares held in the name of another.

  1. Revocation of licence.
  2. Minimum capital ratio.
  3. Non-compliance with capital ratio requirement.
  4. Minimum holding of cash reserves, specified liquid assets, special deposits and stabilisation
    securities.

Duties of Banks

  1. Maintenance of reserve fund.
  2. Restriction on dividend.
  3. Disclosure of interest by directors, managers and officers.
  4. Prohibition of employment of certain persons and inter-locking directorship, etc.
  5. Restrictions on certain banking activities.
  6. Acquisition of shares in small- and medium-scale industries, agricultural enterprises and
    venture capital companies.
  7. Restrictions on operations of merchant banks.
  8. Display of interest rates.

Books of Account

  1. Proper books of account.
  2. Returns by banks.
  3. Publication of consolidated statements.
  1. Publication of annual accounts of banks.
  2. Contents and form of accounts.
  3. Appointment, power and report of approved auditor.
  4. Relationship with specialised banks and finance houses.

Supervision

  1. Appointment and power of Director of Banking Supervision and other examiners.
  2. Routine examination and report thereon.
  3. Special examination.
  4. Power to examine books of other financial institutions and specialised banks.
  5. Failing bank.
  6. Control of failing bank.
  7. Power over significantly under-capitalised banks.
  8. Management of failing bank.
  9. Power of the Bank to revoke licence or apply to court.
  10. Application to the Federal High Court for winding up.
  11. Legal proceedings, etc.
  12. Corporation to forward returns.

General and Supplemental

  1. Restrictions on the use of certain names.
  2. General restriction on advertisement for deposits.
  3. Power of the President to proscribe trade union.
  4. Closure of bank during a strike.
  5. Prohibition of the receipt of commissions, etc., by staff of banks.
  6. Disqualification and exclusion of certain individuals from management of banks.

Miscellaneous Matters

  1. Offences by companies, etc., and by servants and agents.
  2. Offences by directors and managers or banks.
  3. Penalties for offences not otherwise provided for.
  4. Sharing of revenues from penalties.
  5. Protection against adverse claims.
  6. Priority of local deposit liabilities.
  7. Application of Companies and Allied Matters Act Cap. C20.
  8. Application of Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation Act Cap. N I 02.
  9. Power to make regulations.

PART II

Other Financial Institutions

  1. Prohibition of unlicensed financial institutions.
  2. Application for licence.
  3. Failure to comply with conditions of licence.
  1. Supervisory power of the Bank.
  2. Control of failing other financial institutions.
  3. Application of Act to other financial institutions.

PART ill

Miscellaneous and Supplementary

  1. Failure to comply with rules, etc.
  2. Power as to offences and the Attorney-General’s fiat.
  3. Interpretation.
  4. Short title.

 

BANKS AND OTHER FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS ACT

An Act to regulate banking and other financial institutions and for matters connected therewith.

[1991 No. 25.]

[20th June, 1991]

[Commencement.]

PART 1

Banks

Establishment of Banks, etc.

  1. Functions, power and duties of the Central Bank of Nigeria

(1) The Central Bank of Nigeria (hereafter in this Act referred to as “the Bank”) shall
have all the functions and powers conferred and the duties imposed on it under this Act,
subject to the overall supervision of the Minister.

[1997 No.4.]

(2) The Bank shall in addition to the functions and powers conferred on it by this
Act, have the functions and powers conferred and the duties imposed on the Bank by the
Central Bank of Nigeria Act.

[1997 No.4]

(3) The Bank may authorise or instruct any officer or employee of the Bank to per-
form any of the functions, exercise any powers, or discharge any of its duties under this
Act.

(4) The Bank may, either generally or in any particular case, appoint any person who
is not an officer or employee of the Bank, to render such assistance as it may specify in
the exercise of its powers, the performance of its functions, or the discharge of its duties

under this Act, or to exercise, perform or discharge the functions and duties on behalf of
and in the name of the Bank.

(5) For the purposes of this Act, a person shall be deemed to be receiving money as
deposits-

(a)              if the person accepts deposits from the general public as a feature of its business or if it issues an advertisement or solicits for such deposit;

(b)             notwithstanding that it receives moneys as deposits which are limited to fixed
amounts or that certificates or other instruments are issued in respect of any
such amounts providing for the repayment to the holder thereof either conditionally or unconditionally of the amount of the deposits at specified or unspecified dates or for the payment of interest or dividend on the amounts deposited at specified intervals or otherwise, or that such certificates are transferable.

(6) Notwithstanding anything contained in this section to the contrary, the receiving
of moneys against any issue of shares and debentures offered to the public in accordance
with any enactment in force within the Federation shall not be deemed to constitute receiving moneys as deposits for the purposes of this Act.

  1. Banking business

(1) No person shall carryon any banking business in Nigeria except if it is a company duly incorporated in Nigeria and holds a valid banking licence issued under this
Act.

(2) Any person who transacts banking business without a valid licence under this Act
is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding
ten years or to a fine of N2,000,000 or to both such imprisonment and fine.

[1998 No. 38.]

  1. Application for grant of licence

(1) Any person desiring to undertake banking business in Nigeria shall apply in
writing to the Governor for the grant of a licence and shall accompany the application
with the following-

(a)                   a feasibility report of the proposed bank;

      (b)              a draft copy of the memorandum and articles of association of the proposed
bank;

(c)              a list of the shareholders, directors and principal officers of the proposed bank
and their particulars;

(d)                   the prescribed application fee; and

(e)              such other information, documents and reports as the Bank may, from time to
time, specify.

(2) After the applicant has provided all such information, documents and report as the
Bank may require under subsection (1) of this section, the shareholders of the proposed
bank shall deposit with the Bank a sum equal to the minimum paid-up share capital that
may be applicable under section 9 of this Act.

(3) Upon the payment of the sum referred to in subsection (2) of this section, the
Governor may issue a licence with or without conditions or refuse to issue a licence and
the Governor need not give any reasons for the refusal.

(4) Where an application for a licence is granted, the Bank shall give written notice
of that fact to the applicant and the licence fee shall be paid.

(5) An application for a licence shall be forwarded to the Governor and all licences to
be issued shall be with the prior approval of the Minister.

[1997 No.4.]

4. Investment and release of prescribed minimum paid-up share capital

The Bank may invest any amount deposited with it pursuant to section 3 (2) of this
Act in treasury bills or such other securities until such a time as the Governor shall decide
whether or not to grant a licence, and where the licence is not granted the Bank shall re-
pay the sum deposited to the applicant, together with the investment income after de-
ducting administrative expenses and tax on the income.

5. Power to revoke or vary conditions of licence

(1) The Bank may vary or revoke any condition subject to which a licence was
granted or may impose fresh or additional conditions to the grant of a licence.

[1998 No. 38.]

(2) Where the grant of a licence is subject to conditions, the bank shall comply with
those conditions to the satisfaction of the Bank within such period as the Bank may deem
appropriate in the circumstances.

(3) Any bank which fails to comply with any of the conditions of its licence is guilty
of an offence under this section and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding
N50,000 for each day during which the condition is not complied with.

[1998 No. 38.]

(4) Where the Governor proposes to vary, revoke or impose fresh or additional conditions on a licence, he shall, before exercising such power, give notice of his intention to the bank concerned and give the bank an opportunity to make representation to him thereon.

(5) Any bank which fails to comply with any fresh or additional condition imposed in
relation to its licence is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a tine not ex-
ceeding N500,000and to an additional fine of N5,000 for each day during which the
offence continues.

[1998 No. 38.]

6. Opening and closing of branches

(1) No bank may open or close any branch office anywhere within or outside Nigeria
except with the prior consent in writing of the Bank.

(2) Any bank which contravenes the provisions of subsection (1) of this section is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine not exceedingN2,000,000 and the closure in case of the opening of a branch office and the re-opening in the case of a closure of a branch
office and in addition to a fine of N1 00,000 for each day during which the offence continues.

[1998 No. 38.]

7. Restructuring, re-organisation, mergers and disposal, etc., of bank

(1) Except with the prior consent of the Governor, no bank shall enter into an agreement or arrangement-

(a)                    which results in a change in the control of the bank;

(b)                   for the sale, disposal or transfer howsoever, of the whole or any part of the

business of the bank;

(c)                     for the amalgamation or merger of the bank with any other person;

(d)                   for the reconstruction of the bank;

(e)                   to employ a management agent or to transfer its business to any such agent.

(2) Any person who contravenes the provisions of subsection (1) of this section is
guilty of an offence and liable to a fine not exceeding N1 ,000,000 and in the case of a
continuing offence to an additional fine of N10,000 for each day during which the of-
fence continues.

[1998 No. 38.]

  1. Operation of foreign banks in Nigeria

(1) Except with the prior approval of the Bank, no foreign bank shall operate branch
offices or representative offices in Nigeria.

[1998 No. 38.]

(2) The Bank may, subject to such conditions as it may impose, from time to time,
grant to any bank registered in Nigeria or a foreign bank a licence to undertake off-shore
banking business from Nigeria.

[1998 No. 38.]

(3) Subject to the provisions of subsection (I) of this section, nothing in the provisions of the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission Act or any other law or enactment shall be construed as authorising any person, whether as a citizen of Nigeria or a
non-Nigerian, to carryon any banking business in Nigeria without a valid banking licence issued by the Bank under this Act.

[1998 No. 38. Cap. NI17.]

(4) Any person who contravenes the provisions of subsection (1) or (3) of this section
is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding N 1,000,000 and in
the case of a continuing offence to an additional fine of N I 0,000 for each day during
which the offence continues.

[1998 No. 38.]

9. Minimum paid-up share capital of banks and compliance with minimum paid-
up share capital requirement

(1) The Bank shall, from time to time, determine the minimum paid-up share capital
requirement of each category of banks licensed under this Act.

[1998 No. 38.]

(2) Any failure to comply with the provisions of this section of this Act within such
period as may be determined by the Bank, from time to time, shall be a ground for the
revocation of any licence issued pursuant to the provisions of this Act or any other Act
repealed by it.

[1998 No. 38.]

10. Shareholder’s voting rights to be proportional to shareholding

Notwithstanding the provisions of the Companies and Allied Matters Act or any
agreement or contract, the voting rights of every shareholder in a bank shall be proportional to his contribution to the paid-up share capital of the bank.

11. Restriction of legal proceedings in respect of shares held in the name of another

Notwithstanding anything contained in any law or in any contract or instrument, no
suit or other proceedings shall be maintained against any person registered as the holder
of a share in a bank on the ground that the title to the said share vested in any person
other than the registered holder:

Provided that nothing in this section shall bar a suit or other proceeding on behalf
of a minor or person suffering from any mental illness on the ground that the registered
holder holds the share on behalf of the minor or person suffering from the mental illness.

12. Revocation of licence

The Governor may, with the approval of the Board of Directors and by notice pub-
lished in the Gazette, revoke any licence granted under this Act if a bank-

(a)              ceases to carryon in Nigeria the type of banking business for which the licence
was issued for any continuous period of six months or any period aggregating
six months during a continuous period of twelve months;

(b)                   goes into liquidation or is wound up or otherwise dissolved;

(c)             fails to fulfil or comply with any condition subject to which the licence was
granted;

(d)                   has insufficient assets to meet its liabilities;

(e)            fails to comply with any obligation imposed upon it by or under this Act or the
Central Bank of Nigeria Act.

[C4. 1999 No. 40.]

13. Minimum capital ratio

(1) A bank shall maintain, at all times, capital funds unimpaired by losses, in such
ratio to all or any assets or to all or any liabilities or to both such assets and liabilities of
the bank and all its offices in and outside Nigeria as may be specified by the Bank.

(2) Any bank which fails to observe any such specified ratios may be prohibited by

the bank from

(a)                   advertising for or accepting new deposits;

(b)                   granting credit and making investment;

(c)                    paying cash dividends to shareholders.

(3) In addition, the bank may be required to draw up within a specified time a capital
reconstitution plan acceptable to the Bank.

14. Non-compliance with capital ratio requirement

(1) Failure to comply with the provisions of section 13 of this Act may constitute a
ground for the revocation of the licence of the bank under this Act.

(2) Where the Bank proposes to revoke the licence of any bank pursuant to subsection (1) of this section, the Bank shall give notice of its intention to the bank and the bank
may within 30 days make representation (if any) to the Bank in respect thereof.

[1999 No. 40.]

15. Minimum holding of cash reserves, specified liquid assets, special deposits and
stabilisation securities

(1) Every bank shall maintain with the Bank cash reserves, and special deposits and
hold specified liquid assets or stabilisation securities, as the case may be, not less in
amount than as may, from time to time, be prescribed by the Bank by virtue of section 40
of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act.

(2) Where both assets and liabilities are due from and to other banks, they shall be
offset accordingly, and any surplus of assets or liabilities shall be included or deducted,
as the case may be, in computing specified liquid assets.

(3) In the case of the long-term advances to a bank or by an overseas branch or office
of a bank, the advances may, with the approval of the Bank, be excluded from the demand liabilities of the bank.

(4) Every bank shall-

(a)              furnish within a reasonable time any information required by the Bank to satisfy the Bank that the bank is observing the requirements of subsection (1) of
this section;

(b)              not allow its holding of cash reserves, specified liquid assets, special deposits
and stabilisation securities to be less than the amount which may, from time to
time, be prescribed by the Bank;

(c)              not during the period of any deficiency, grant or permit increases in advances,
loans or credit facilities to any person without the prior approval in writing of
the Bank.

(5) Any bank which fails to comply with any of the provisions of subsection (4) of
this section is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine of-

(a)             in the case of paragraph (a) N500,000 for every month during which a default
under that paragraph (a) exists;

[1999 No. 40.]

(b)                    in the case of paragraph (b) N500,000 for each month of the offence;

[1998 No. 38.]

(c)       in the case of paragraph (c) N500,000 for each month of the offence,

[1998 No. 38.]

and the Bank may also, during the period when the bank fails to comply with any of the
requirements of subsection (4) as aforesaid, withdraw any privileges or facilities that are
normally accorded to the bank.

(6) For the purposes of this section, specified liquid assets, provided they are freely
transferable and free from any lien or charge of any kind, shall, without prejudice to the
provisions of section 40 of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 1991, consist of all or any of
the following, that is-

(a)                    currency notes and coins which are legal tender in Nigeria;

(b)                    balances at the Bank;

(c)                   net balances at any licensed bank (excluding uncleared effects) and money at

call in Nigeria;

(d)                    Treasury bills and treasury certificates issued by the Federal Government;

(e)                   inland bills of exchange and promissory notes rediscountable at the Bank;

(f)               stocks issued by the Federal Government with such dates of maturity as may
be approved by the Bank;

 

(g)                    negotiable certificates of deposit approved by the Bank; and

(h)             such other negotiable instruments as may, from time to time, be approved by
the Bank for the purpose of this subsection.

 

Duties of Banks

16. Maintenance of reserve fund

(1) Every bank shall maintain a reserve fund and shall, out of its net profits for each
year (after due provision made for taxation) and before any dividend is declared, where
the amount of the reserve fund is-

(a)             less than the paid-up share capital, transfer to the reserve fund a sum equal to
not less than thirty per cent of the net profits; or

(b)             equal to or in excess of the paid-up share capital, transfer to the reserve fund a
sum equal to not less than fifteen per cent of the net profit:

Provided that no transfer under this subsection shall be made until all identifiable
losses have been made good.

(2) Any bank which fails to comply with the provisions of subsection (1) of this section is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine of N500,000.

(3) Notwithstanding paragraphs (a) and (b) of subsection (1) of this section, the Bank
may, from time to time, specify different proportions of the net profits of each year, being
either lesser or greater than the proportion specified in paragraphs (a) and (b), to be transferred to the reserve fund of a bank for the purpose of ensuring that the amount of the reserve fund of such bank is sufficient for the purpose of its business and adequate in relation to its liabilities.

17. Restriction on dividend

(I) No bank shall pay dividends on its shares until-

(a)              all its preliminary expenses, organisational expenses, shares selling commission, brokerage, amount of losses incurred and other capitalised expenses not
represented by tangible assets have been completely written off;

(b)              adequate provisions have been made to the satisfaction of the Bank for actual
and contingent losses on risk assets, liabilities, off-balance sheet commitments
and such unearned incomes as are derivable therefrom;

(c)              it has complied with any capital ratio requirement as specified by the Bank
pursuant to section 13 (1) of this Act.

(2) Any director, manager or officer who fails to comply with the requirements of
this section of this Act is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine of five per
cent of the dividend paid or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or to
both such fine and imprisonment.

[1998 No. 38.]

18. Disclosure of interest by directors, managers and officers 
(1) No manager or any other officer of a bank shall-

(a)       in any manner whatsoever, whether directly or indirectly, have personal interest in any advance, loan or credit facility; and if he has any such personal interest, he shall declare the nature of his interest to the bank;

(b)              grant any advance, loan or credit facility to any person, unless it is authorised
in accordance with the rules and regulations of the bank; and where adequate
security is required by such rules and regulations such security shall, prior to
the grant, be obtained for the advance, loan or credit facility and shall be de-
posited with the bank;

(c)                     benefit as a result of any advance, loan or credit facility granted by the bank.

(2) Any manager or officer who contravenes or fails to comply with any of the provisions of subsection (1) of this section is guilty of an offence under this section and liable
on conviction to a fine of N1 or to imprisonment for a term of three years; and in
addition, any gains or benefits accruing to any person convicted under this section by
reason of such contravention, shall be forfeited to the Federal Government, and the gains
or benefit shall vest accordingly in that Government.

(3) It shall be the duty of a director of a bank who is in any way, whether directly or
indirectly, interested in the grant of an advance, loan or credit facility with the bank to
declare the nature of his interest at a meeting of the board of directors of the bank.

[1998 No. 38.]

(4) In the case of a proposed advance, loan or credit facility, the declaration required
by this section of this Act shall be made at the meeting of the board of directors of the
bank at which the request for the advance, loan or credit facility is first taken into consideration or if the director was not present on the date of the meeting at which the mailer was discussed he shall state his interest in the proposed advance, loan or credit facility at the next meeting of the board of directors of the bank held after he becomes so interested, and in a case where the director becomes interested in any advance, loan or credit facility after it is granted, the declaration shall be made at the first meeting of the board of directors of the bank held after he becomes so interested.

[1998 No. 38.]

(5) For the purpose of this section of this Act, a general notice given to the board of
directors of a bank by a director to the effect that he is a member of a company or firm
seeking an advance, loan or credit facility for the bank shall be regarded as a declaration
of his interest in the grant of the advance, loan or credit facility which may, after the date
of the notice, be granted to that company or firm, and shall be deemed to be a sufficient
declaration of interest in relation to any such advance, loan or credit facility so granted:

Provided that any such notice shall not have effect unless it is given at a meeting of
the board of directors of the bank which shall be required to do all things reasonably necessary to ensure that it is brought up and read at the next meeting of the board of directors
of the bank after it is so given.

[1998 No. 38.]

(6) The provisions of subsection (3) of this section shall not apply in any case-

(a)             where the interest of the director consists only of being a person holding less
than five per cent of the shares of the company which is seeking an advance,
loan or credit facility from the bank; or

(b)              if the interest of the director may properly be regarded by the Bank as immaterial.

[1998 No. 38.]

(7) For the purpose of subsection (5) of this section, a general notice given to the
board of directors of a bank by a director shall be deemed to be a sufficient declaration of
interest in relation to any advance, loan or credit facility, if-

(a)          the notice specifies the nature and extent of his interest in the company or firm

(b)              such interest is not different in nature to or greater in extent than the nature and
extent specified in the notice at the time any advance, loan or credit facility is
made; and

(c)              the notice is given at the meeting of the board of directors of the bank or the
director takes reasonable steps to ensure that it is brought up and read at the
next meeting of the board of directors of the bank after it is given.

[1998 No. 38.]

(8) Every director of a bank who holds any office or possesses any property whereby,
whether directly of indirectly, duties or interests might be created in conflict with his du-
ties or interests as a director of a bank, shall declare at a meeting of the board of directors
of the bank, the fact and the nature, character and extent of the interest.

[1998 No. 38.]

(9) The declaration referred to in subsection (8) of this section shall be required to be
made at the first meeting of the board of directors of the bank held-

(a)                           after he becomes a director of the bank; or

(b)                           if already a director, after he came into possession of the property.

[1998 No. 38.]

(10) The secretary of the bank shall cause to be brought up and read any declaration
made under subsection (3) or (8) of this section at the next meeting of the board of directors of the bank after it is made and shall record any declaration made under this section of this Act in the minutes of the meeting at which it was made or at the meeting at which it was brought up and read.

[1998 No. 38.]

(11) Any director who contravenes the provisions of subsection (3) or (8) of this section
is guilty of an offence liable on conviction to a fine of N I 00,000 or imprisonment for a term
of three years or to both such fine and imprisonment.

[1998 No. 38.]

19. Prohibition of employment of certain persons and inter-locking directorship,
etc.

(1) No bank shall-

(a)              employ or continue the employment of any person who is or at any time has
been adjudged bankrupt or has suspended payment to or has compounded with
his creditors or who is or has been convicted by a court for an offence involving fraud or dishonesty, or professional misconduct;

(b)              be managed by a management agent except as may be approved by the Bank.

(2) Except with the approval of the Bank, no bank shall have as a director any person
who is a director of-

(a)                    any other bank;

(c)             companies which among themselves are entitled to exercise voting rights in
excess of ten per cent of the total voting rights of all the shareholders of the
bank.

(3) No bank shall be managed by any person who is-
(a)                   a director of any other company not being a subsidiary of the bank; or
(b)                   engaged in any other business or vocation.
(4) Every director of a bank shall sign a code of conduct in such form or manner as

the Bank may, from time to time, prescribe.

(5) The chief executive of a bank shall cause all the officers of the bank to sign a
code of conduct as may be approved by the board of directors.

20. Restrictions on certain banking activities

(1) A bank shall not, without the prior approval in writing of the Bank, grant-

(a)       to any person any advance, loan or credit facility or give any financial guarantee or incur any other liability on behalf of any person so that the total value of  the advance, loan, credit facility, financial guarantee or any other liability in respect of the person is at any time more than twenty per cent of the shareholders fund unimpaired by losses or in the case of a merchant bank not more than fifty per cent of its shareholders fund unimpaired by losses; and for the purpose of this paragraph all advances, loans or credit facilities extended to any person shall be aggregated and shall include all advances, loans or credit facilities extended to any subsidiaries or associates of a body corporate:

Provided that the provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to transactions
between banks or between branches of a bank or to the purchase of clean or
documentary bills of exchange, telegraphic transfers or documents of title to
goods the holder of which is entitled to payment for exports from Nigeria or to
advance made against such bills, transfers or documents;

(b)       any advances, loans or credit facilities against the security of its own shares or
any unsecured advances, loans or credit facilities unless authorised in accor-
dance with the bank’s rules and regulations and where any such rules and
regulations require adequate security, such security shall be provided or, as the
case may require, deposited with the bank.

(2) A bank shall not, without the prior approval in writing of the Bank-

(a)       permit to be outstanding, unsecured advances, loans or unsecured credit facilities, of an aggregate amount in excess ofN50,000-

[1999 No. 40.]

(i)     to its directors or any of them whether such advances, loans or credit  facilities are obtained by its directors jointly or severally;

(ii)     to any firm, partnership or private company in which it or anyone or more of its directors is interested as director, partner, manager or agent or any individual firm, partnership or private company of which any of its directors is a guarantor;

(iii)     to any public or private company in which it or anyone or more of its
directors jointly or severally maintains shareholding of not less than
five per cent either directly or indirectly;

(b)       permit to be outstanding to its officers and employees, unsecured advances,
loans or unsecured credit facilities, which in the aggregate for anyone officer
or employee, is an amount which exceeds one year’s emolument to such officer of employee;

(c)       engage, whether on its own account or on a commission basis, in wholesale or
retail trade, including the import or export trade, except in so far as may exceptionally be necessary in the course of the banking operations and services of that bank or in the course of the satisfaction of debts due to it; so however that nothing in this paragraph shall be construed as precluding a bank from undertaking equipment leasing business or debt factoring provided that the fore-going provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to a bank in the circum-
stances permitted under section 21 of this Act;

(d)       without prejudice to the provisions of section 2 J of this Act, acquire or hold
any part of the share capital of any financial or commercial or other undertaking, except-

(i)    any shareholding approved by the Bank in any company set up for the
purpose of promoting the development of the money market or capital
market in Nigeria or of improving the financial machinery for financing economic development;

(ii)    any shareholding approved by the Bank pursuant to sub-paragraph (1)
of this paragraph, the aggregate value of which does not at any time
exceed twenty-five per cent of the sum of paid-up share capital and
statutory reserves of that bank;

(iii)     all shareholding acquired by a merchant bank while managing an equity issue:

Provided that the aggregate value of such acquisition does not at any time
exceed the sum of the paid-up share capital of that merchant bank or ten per
cent of its total assets, excluding contract items, whichever is higher and that
this paragraph shall not apply to any nominee company of a bank which deals
in stock and shares for or on behalf of the bank’s customers or clients or majority interest acquired by a merchant bank in a company while managing an equity issue;

 

(e)       remit, either in whole or in part, the debts owed to it by any of its directors or
past director;

(f)        purchase, sell, dispose, acquire or lease any real estate for whatever purpose.

[1998 No. 38.]

(3) Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this section, a bank may secure debt
on any real or other property, and in default of repayment, may acquire such property and
exercise any power of sale as may be provided for in any instrument or, by law prescribed, immediately upon such default or as soon thereafter as may be deemed proper.

(4) In paragraphs (a) and (b) of subsection (2) of this section, the expressions “unsecured advances and loans” or “unsecured credit facilities”, mean advances, loans or credit facilities made without security, or, in respect of any advances, loans or credit facilities made with security, any part thereof which at any time exceeds the market value of the assets constituting the security, or where the bank is satisfied that there is no established market value, the value of the assets as determined on the basis of a valuation approved by the bank.

(5) In paragraphs (a) and (e) of subsection (2) of this section, the expression “director”, includes director’s wife, husband, father, mother, brother, sister, son, daughter and their spouses.

(6) All the directors of a bank shall be liable jointly and severally to indemnify the
bank against any loss arising from any unsecured advances, loans or credit facilities under paragraph (a) of subsection (2) of this section.

(7) Any director, manager or officer who fails to comply with the requirements of
this section of this Act is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not ex-
ceeding N 100,000 or to imprisonment for a term of three years and shall in addition be
required to repay the loan or forfeit his known assets in lieu of the unpaid loan.

[1998 No. 38.]

(8) Any bank which after the commencement of this Act, enters into any transaction
which is inconsistent with the requirement of subsection (7) of this section is guilty of an
offence and liable on conviction to a fine of N 1,000,000.

[1998 No. 38.)

(9) Any bank which, after the commencement of this Act, enters into any transaction
which is inconsistent with any of the provisions of subsection (1) or (2) of this section, is
guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to pay to the Bank a fine of N 100,00 for
each day during which the transaction continues.

[1997 No.4.)

21. Acquisition of shares in small- and medium-scale industries, agricultural enter-
prises and venture capital companies

(1) A bank may acquire or hold part of the share capital of any agricultural, industrial
or venture capital company subject to the following conditions, that is-

(a)              the venture capital company is set up for the purpose of promoting the development of indigenous technology or a new venture in Nigeria;

(b)              the shareholding by the bank is in small- or medium-scale industry, and agricultural enterprises as defined by the Bank;

(c)       the shareholding by the bank in any medium-scale industry, agricultural enterprise or venture capital company or any other business approved by the Bank shall not be more than ten per cent of the bank’s shareholders fund unimpaired by losses and shall not exceed forty per cent of the paid-up share capital of the company, the shares of which are acquired or held;

(d)              the aggregate value of the equity participation of the bank in all enterprises
pursuant to this section does not at any time exceed, in the case of a commercial bank, twenty per cent of its shareholders fund unimpaired by losses or, in the case of a merchant bank, not more than fifty per cent of its shareholders fund unimpaired by losses:

Provided that a bank may hold shares acquired in the course of the satisfaction of
any debt owed to it.

(2) Without prejudice to the provisions of subsection (1) of this section, a bank may
hold or acquire share capital of any other business, subject to the approval of the Bank.

(3) Every bank shall, within 21 days of the acquisition of any shareholding pursuant
to subsection (1) of this section, give full particulars thereof to the Bank.

(4) Any bank which fails to comply with the provisions of subsection (3) of this section is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine of N1,000 for each day during which the offence continues.

[1999 No. 40.)

22. Restrictions on operations of merchant banks

(1) A merchant bank shall not-

(a)       accept any deposit withdrawable by cheque;

(b)       accept any deposit below an amount which shall be prescribed, from time to
time, by the Bank;

(c)       hold for more than six months any equity interest acquired in a company while managing an equity issue, except as stipulated in section 21 of this Act.

(2) Any merchant bank which acts in contravention of or fails to comply with any of the provisions of this section is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine not exceeding

N25,000 for each day during which the offence continues.

[l998 No. 38.]

23. Display of interest rates

(1) Every bank shall display at its offices its lending and deposit interest rates and
shall render to the Bank information on such rates as may be specified from time to time
by the Bank:

Provided that the provisions of this subsection shall not apply to profit and loss
sharing banks.

(2) Any bank in breach of any of the provisions of this section is guilty of an offence
and liable to a fine not exceeding N5,000 for every day during which the offence continues.

[l998 No. 38.]

Books of Account

24. Proper books of account

(1) Every bank shall cause to be kept proper books of account with respect to all the
transactions of the bank.

(2) For the purpose of subsection (1) of this section, proper books of account shall be
deemed to be kept with respect to all transactions if such books as are necessary to ex-
plain such transactions and give a true and fair view of the state of affairs of a bank, are
kept by the bank and are in compliance with the accounting standard as may be pre-
scribed for banks.

(3) The books of account shall be kept at the principal administrative office of a bank
and at the branches of each bank in the English language or any other language approved
by the Federal Government.

(4) Where the books of account kept by a bank with respect to all its transactions, are
prepared and kept in such a manner that, in the opinion of the Bank, they have not been
properly prepared and kept, or where a bank renders returns in accordance with the provisions of section 25 of this Act, which in the opinion of the Bank are inaccurate, the Bank
may appoint a firm of qualified accountants to prepare proper books of account or render
accurate returns, as the case may be, for the bank and the cost of preparing the accounts
and rendering the returns shall be borne by the bank.

(5) If any person being a director, manager or officer of a bank-

(a)       fails to take all reasonable steps to secure compliance with any of the provisions of this section;

(b)       has by his wilful act been the cause of any default thereof by the bank,

he is guilty of an offence and liable, in respect of paragraph (a) of this subsection, to a
fine of N 100,000 and in respect of paragraph (b) of this subsection, to a fine of N50,000
or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years or to both such fine and imprisonment.

[1999 No. 40.]

25. Returns by banks

(1) Every bank shall submit to the Bank not later than 28 days after the last day of
each month or such other interval as the Bank may specify, a statement showing-

(a)                   the assets and liabilities of the bank; and

(b)              an analysis of advances and other assets, at its head office and branches in and
outside Nigeria in such form as the Bank may specify, from time to time.

(2) Every bank shall submit such other information, documents, statistics or returns
as the Bank may deem necessary for the proper understanding of the statements supplied
under subsection (1) of this section.

(3) Any bank which fails to comply with any of the requirements of subsection (1) or
(2) of this section is, in respect of each such failure, guilty of an offence and liable to a
fine not exceeding N25,000 for each day during which the offence continues.

[1998 No. 38.]

26. Publication of consolidated statements

(1) The statements and information submitted by each bank under section 25 of this
Act shall be regarded as confidential:

Provided that the Bank shall furnish any such statement or information to any
agency of Government as required by law.

(2) Notwithstanding anything in this section, the Bank may prepare and publish consolidated statements aggregating the statements furnished under section 25 of this Act for
each category of banks.

27. Publication of annual accounts of banks

(1) Subject to the prior approval in writing of the Bank, a bank shall not later than
four months after the end of its financial year-

(a)          cause to be published in a daily newspaper printed in and circulating in Nigeria and approved by the Bank;

(b)              exhibit in a conspicuous position in each of its offices and branches in Nigeria;
and

(c)        forward to the Bank,

copies of the bank’s balance sheet and profit and loss account duly signed and containing
the full and correct names of the directors of the bank.

(2) Every published account of a bank, under subsection (1) of this section, shall disclose in detail penalties paid as a result of contravention of the provisions of this Act and provisions of any policy guidelines in force during the financial year in question and the auditor’s report shall reflect such contravention.

(3) The balance sheet and profit and loss account of a bank shall bear on their face
the report of an approved auditor and shall contain statements on such matters as may be
specified by the Bank, from time to time.

(4) For the purpose of subsection (3) of this section, an “approved auditor” shall be
an auditor approved for the purpose of section 29 of this Act.

(5) Any bank which fails to comply with any of the requirements of this section is in
respect of each such failure guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine of
N 10,000 each day during which the offence continues.

[1999 No. 40.]

28Contents and form of accounts

(1) Every balance sheet and every profit and loss account of a bank shall give a true
and fair view of the state of affairs of the bank as at the end of the reporting period.

(2) Every balance sheet and every profit and loss account of a bank forwarded to
the Bank in accordance with the provisions of subsection (1) of this section and section 27 (1) (c) of this Act shall comply with the requirements of any circular which has been issued by the Bank thereon.

(3) Any person being a director of any bank who fails to take all reasonable steps to
secure compliance with any of the provisions of this section in respect of any accounts is
guilty of an offence and liable to pay to the Bank a fine of N 1 ,000 or to imprisonment for
five years or to both such tine and imprisonment.

[1999 No. 40.]

29Appointment, power and report of approved auditor

(1) Every bank shall appoint annually a person approved by the Bank, in this section
referred to as “the approved auditor”, whose duties shall be to make to the shareholders a
report upon the annual balance sheet and profit and loss account of the bank and every
such report shall contain statements as to the matters and such other information as may
be prescribed, from time to time, by the Bank.

(2) For the purpose of this section, the approved auditor shall be an auditor who is-

(a)                   a member of one of the professional bodies recognised in Nigeria;

(b)                    approved by the Bank;

(c)                    resident in Nigeria; and

(d)                    carrying on in Nigeria professional practice as accountant and auditor.

(3) Any person-

(a)                    having any interest in a bank otherwise than as a depositor; or

(b)                    who is a director, officer or agent of a bank; or

      (c)               which is a firm in which a director of a bank has any interest as partner or director; or

(d)                    who is indebted to a bank,

shall not be eligible for appointment as the approved auditor for that bank;

    (e)       and a person appointed as such auditor who subsequently-
(i)         acquires such interest; or

(ii)           becomes a director, officer or agent of the bank; or

(iii)             becomes indebted to a partner in a firm in which a director of a bank is
interested as partner or director, shall cease to be such auditor.

 

(4) If any bank fails to appoint an approved auditor under subsection (1) of this section the Bank shall appoint a suitable person for that purpose and shall fix the remuneration to be paid by the bank to such auditor.

(5) Any approved auditor under this section who acts in contravention of or fails deliberately or negligently to comply with any of the provisions of this section is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to pay to the Bank a fine of not less than N200,000 and not exceeding N500,000.

[1997 No.4. 1998 No. 38.]

(6) The report of the approved auditor shall be read together with the report of the
board of directors at the annual general meeting of the shareholders of the bank and two
copies of each report together with the auditor’s analysis of bad and doubtful advances in
a form specified, from time to time, by the Bank shall be sent to the Bank.

(7) If an auditor appointed under this section, in the course of his duties as an auditor
of a bank, is satisfied that-

(a)              there has been a contravention of this Act, or that an offence under any other
law has been committed by the bank or any other person; or

(b)              losses have been incurred by the bank which substantially reduce its capital
funds; or

(c)              any irregularity which jeopardises the interest of depositors or creditors of the
bank, or any other irregularity has occurred; or

(d)       he is unable to confirm that the claims of depositors or creditors are covered by
the assets of the bank,

he shall immediately report the matter to the Bank.

(8) The approved auditor shall forward to the Bank two copies of the domestic re-
ports on the bank’s activities not later than three months after the end of the bank’s financial year.

(9) Any approved auditor under this section who acts in contravention of or fails deliberately or negligently to comply with any of the provisions of this section of this Act is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a tine not exceeding N500,000 and where the approved auditor is a firm, the individual partner or partners shall in addition be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years and to the fine required to be paid by the firm under this subsection.

[1998 No. 38.]

(10) The appointment of an approved auditor shall not be determined without prior
approval of the Bank.

30. Relationship with specialised banks and finance houses

(1) As from the commencement of this Act, the Governor shall have power to examine,  from time to time, the accounts and other books of the Nigeria Industrial Development Bank, the Nigeria Agricultural and Cooperative Bank, the Nigeria Bank for Commerce and Industry, the Urban Development Bank, all Mortgage Institutions, Community Banks and the Peoples Bank and such other specialised banks.

(2) The Bank shall also have power to examine the accounts of bureaux de change, 
discount houses and such other financial institutions and in that regard have power to
issue reports, from time to time, regarding the accounts of such financial institutions.

(3) The periodic reports and findings of the Bank in relation to the said specialised
banks and other financial institutions shall be forwarded to the Head of State through the
Minister.

(4) For the purpose of implementation of this section, the specialised banks and other
financial institutions shall be treated in the same manner as other banks with respect to
the requirements of section 24 of this Act.

[1997 No.4.]

Supervision

31. Appointment and power of Director of Banking Supervision and other examiners

(1) There shall be an officer of the Bank who shall be appointed by the Governor to
be known as the Director of Banking Supervision or by such other title as the Governor
may specify.

(2) The Director of Banking Supervision shall have power to carry out supervisory
duties in respect of banks and other financial institutions and specialised banks and or
that purpose shall-

[1998 No. 38.]

(a)              under conditions of confidentiality, examine periodically the books and affairs
of each bank;

(b)              have a right of access at all times to the books, accounts and vouchers of
banks;

(c)              have power to require from directors, managers and officers of banks such
information and explanation as he deems necessary to the performance of his
duties under this section.

(3) The Governor shall appoint to assist the Director of Banking Supervision such
other officers of the Bank as the Governor may, from time to time, decide.

(4) The officers may be designated examiners or have such other titles as the  Governor may specify.

(5) For the purpose of this section, references to examiners are references to the Di-
rector of Banking Supervision and any officer of the Bank appointed pursuant to subsection (3) of the section.

(6) In examining the affairs of any bank under this Act, it shall be the duty of an examiner at all times to avoid unreasonable hindrance to the daily business of the bank.

(7) Every bank shall produce to the examiners at such times as the examiners may
specify, all books, accounts, documents and information which they may require.

(8) If any book, document or information is not produced in accordance with the requirement of an examiner under this section or what is produced or furnished to an examiner is false in any material particular, the bank is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to pay to the Bank a fine of N100,000 and in addition, to a fine of N10,000 for each day during which the offence continues.

[1997 No.4. 1998 No. 38.]

32, Routine examination and report thereon

(1) The Governor shall, in the case of routine examination, forward a copy of the re-
port arising from the examination together with the recommendations of the Bank, to the
bank concerned with instruction that it be placed before the meeting of the board of directors of the bank specially convened for the purpose of considering the report and the recommendations thereon.

[1998 No. 38.]

(2) The bank shall within two weeks convey to the Governor the board of director’s
reactions to the report and its proposal for implementing the recommendations of the
Bank.

(3) Any bank which fails to comply with the provisions of subsection (1) or (2) of
this section is guilty of an offence and liable to the Bank for a fine not exceeding
N25,000 for each day during which the offence continues and if the offence continues for
more than 30 days, the Bank may in addition to the fine, withdraw any privilege or facility granted to that bank by the Bank.

33. Special examination

(1) The Governor shall have power to order a special examination or investigation of
the books and affairs of a bank where he is satisfied that-

      (a)                   it is in the public interest so to do; or

(b)                    the bank has been carrying on its business in a manner detrimental to the interest of its depositors and creditors; or

(c)                     the bank has “insufficient” assets to cover its liabilities to the public; or

(d)                    the bank has been contravening the provisions of this Act; or

(e)                    an application is made therefore by-

(i)     a director or shareholder of the bank; or
(ii)    a depositor or creditor of the bank:

Provided that in the case of paragraph (e) of this subsection, the Governor may not
order a special examination or investigation of the books and affairs of a bank if he is
satisfied that it is not necessary to do so.

(2) For the purpose of subsection (1) of this section, the Governor shall have power
to appoint one or more qualified persons other than the officers of the Bank to conduct
special examination or investigation, under conditions of confidentiality, of the books and
affairs of the bank.

(3) Nothing in this section or in any other section of this Act shall be construed as
precluding the Governor from appointing one or more officers of the Bank as examiners
apart from those mentioned in section 32 of this Act and ascribing to such officers such
other designations as he deems fit, and from directing or requiring all or any of the officers to exercise all or any of the powers of the Director of Banking Supervision under this
Act.

(4) The Governor shall have power to order that all expenses of or incidental to an
examination or investigation be paid by the bank examined or investigated.

34. Power to examine books of other financial institutions and specialised banks

(1) Notwithstanding the powers of the Bank specified in this Act, as amended, the

Bank shall have power, from time to time, to examine the books and affairs of-

(a)                   the Nigerian Industrial Development Bank;

(b)                    the Nigerian Agricultural and Co-operative Bank;

(c)                    the Nigerian Export Import Bank;

(d)                    the Nigerian Bank for Commerce and Industry;

(e)                    the Urban Development Bank;

(f)                    the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria and all primary mortgage institutions;

(g)                    Community banks;

(h)                    Peoples Bank of Nigeria;

(i)                    bureaux de change;

(j)                    discount houses,

and such other financial institutions and specialised banks as may be specified, from time
to time, by the Bank.

(2) The periodic reports and findings of the Bank in relation to the other financial in-
stitutions and specialised banks together with the recommendations of the Bank shall, in
specific cases, be forwarded to the appropriate Minister for necessary action.

(3) For the purposes of implementation of this section of this Act, the other financial
institutions and specialised banks shall be treated in the same manner as other banks with
respect to the requirements of section 24 of this Act.

[1998 No. 38.]

35. Failing bank

(1) Where a bank informs the Bank that-

(a)                    it is likely to become unable to meet its obligations under this Act; or

(b)                    it is about to suspend payment to any extent; or

(c)                     it is insolvent; or

      (d)                    where, after an examination under section 33 of this Act or otherwise how soever, the Bank is satisfied that the bank is in a grave situation as regards the
matters referred to in section 33 (1) of this Act, the Governor may by order in writing exercise anyone or more of the powers specified in subsection (2) of this section.
(2) The Governor may by order in writing under subsection (1) of this section-

(a)              prohibit the bank from extending any further credit facility for such period as
may be set out in the order, and make the prohibition subject to such exceptions, and impose such conditions in relation to the exceptions as may be set out in the order, and from time to time, by further order similarly made, extend the aforesaid period;

(b)              require the bank to take any steps or any action or to do or not to do any act or
thing whatsoever, in relation to the bank or its business or its directors or officers which the Bank may consider necessary and which is set out in the order, within such times as may be stipulated therein;

(c)              remove for reasons to be recorded in writing with effect from such date as may
be set out in the order, any manager or officer of the bank, notwithstanding
anything in any written law, or any limitations contained in the memorandum
and articles of association of the bank;

[1999 No. 40.]

(d)             in respect of a bank, notwithstanding anything in any written law or any limitations contained in the memorandum and articles of association of the bank,
and in particular, notwithstanding any limitation therein as to the minimum or
maximum number of directors, for reasons to be recorded in writing-

(i)    remove from office, with effect from such date as may be set out in the
order, any director of the bank; or

(ii)    appoint any person or persons as a director or directors of the bank, and
provide in the order for the person or persons so appointed to be paid
by the bank such remuneration as may be set out in the order;

(e)              appoint any person to advise the bank in relation to the proper conduct of its
business, and provide in the order for the person so appointed to be paid by the
bank such remuneration as may be set out in the order.

36Control of failing bank

If after taking such of the steps stipulated in section 35 of this Act or such other
measures as in the opinion of the Bank may be appropriate in the circumstance, the state
of affairs of the bank concerned does not improve, the Bank may turn over the control
and management of such bank to the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (hereinafter
in this Act referred to as “the Corporation”) on such terms and conditions as the Bank
may stipulate from time to time.

[1998 No. 38.]

37. Power over significantly under-capitalised banks

Where the Corporation has assumed control over a bank as provided under section 36
of this Act and such bank is significantly under-capitalised to the extent that its risk
weighted assets ratio is below five per cent but above two per cent, the Corporation
may-

(a)             require the bank to submit a recapitalisation plan acceptable to the Corporation
within a stipulated period; or

(b)             prohibit the bank from extending any further credit and incurring any additional capital expenditure without the approval of the Corporation; or

(c)              notwithstanding the provisions of section 7 of this Act, require the bank to take
such steps or to do or not to do any act or thing whatsoever in relation to the
business of the bank or its directors or officers, which the Corporation may
consider necessary within such time as the Corporation may stipulate; or

(d)              with the approval of the Bank remove, for reasons to be recorded in writing
and with effect from any date as may be specified, any director, manager, officer or employee of the bank; or

(e)              appoint, with the approval of the Bank, any person or persons as a director or
directors of the bank and cause their remuneration to be provided by the bank.

[1998 No. 38.]

38. Management of failing bank

(1) Where the Corporation has assumed control of the business of a bank pursuant to
section 36 of this Act, the Corporation shall remain in control of and continue to carry on
the business of the bank in the name and on behalf of the bank until such a time as in the
opinion of the Bank, it is no longer necessary for the Corporation to remain in control of
the business of the bank.

[1998 No. 38.]

(2) Accordingly, the cost and expenses of the Corporation or remuneration of an appointed person of the bank shall be a first charge on the assets of the bank.

39. Power of the Bank to revoke licence or apply to court

In the event that the bank over which the Corporation has assumed control cannot be
rehabilitated, the Corporation may recommend to the Bank other resolution measures
which may include the revocation of the bank’s licence.

[1990 No. 40. 1998 No. 38.]

40. Application to the Federal High Court for winding up

Where the licence of a bank has been revoked pursuant to section 39 of this Act, the
Corporation shall apply to the Federal High Court for a winding up order of the affairs of
the bank.

[1998 No. 38.]

41.Legal proceedings, etc.

(1) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in any law or enactment, no
suit shall be instituted against a bank whose control has been assumed by the Corporation.

(2) If any such proceeding is instituted in any court or tribunal against the bank, it
shall abate, cease or be discontinued without further assurance other than this Act.

[1998 No. 38.]

42. Corporation to forward returns

The Corporation shall, while acting as the liquidator of a licensed bank, forward to the
Bank copies of any returns which it is required to make, from time to time, by the Bank.
[1998 No. 38.]

General and Supplemental

43. Restrictions on the use of certain names

(1) Except with the written consent of the Governor-

(a)       no bank shall as from the commencement of this Act, be registered or incorporated with a name which includes the words “Central”, “Federal”, “Federation”, “National”, “Nigeria”, “Reserve”, “State”, “Christian”, “Islamic”, “Moslem”, “Quoranic”, or “Biblical”;

(b)       no person other than a bank licensed under this Act shall or continue to use the
word “bank” or any of its derivatives, either in English or in any other language in the description or title under which the person is carrying on business
in Nigeria:

Provided that paragraph (b) of this subsection shall not apply to banking institutions referred to in section 53 of this Act.

(2) Every bank shall use as part of its description or title the word “bank” or anyone
or more of its derivatives, either in English or in some other language.

(3) Subsection (1) of this section shall not apply to any registered association of
banks, bankers or bank employees formed for the protection of their mutual interest or in
furtherance or promotion of education and training of personnel for financial institutions
in Nigeria.

(4) Any person who acts in contravention of this section is guilty of an offence and
liable on conviction to a tine not exceeding N50,000 for each day during which the of-
fence continues.

[1997 No.4. 1998 No. 38.]

44. General restriction on advertisement for deposits

(1) No person other than a bank or any other person authorised to take deposits shall
issue any advertisement inviting the public to deposit money with it.

(2) Any person who issues an advertisement in contravention of the provisions of
subsection (1) of this section is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine of

N500,000 or to imprisonment for a term of ten years or to both such fine and imprisonment.

[1997 NO.4. 1998 No. 38.]

(3) Where any bank proposes to issue any advertisement, the bank shall deliver to the
Bank the text of the proposed advertisement together with the bank’s latest published
accounts, and shall thereafter comply with such directives and conditions as the Bank
may prescribe and such text shall be regarded as confidential information.

(4) Any bank which fails to comply with the provisions of subsection (3) of this section is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine of N50,000 and the bank shall in addition pay a fine of N1 ,000 for every day during which an advertisement issued in contravention of subsection (3) of this section continues.

(5) In this Act, “advertisement” includes any form of advertising whether in publication or by the display of notice or by means of circular or other document or by any exhibition of photographs or cinematograph or by way of sound broadcasting or television or loudspeakers or other public address systems and reference to the issuing of an advertisement shall be construed accordingly; and for the purposes of this Act, an advertisement issued by any person by way of display or exhibition in a public place shall be treated as issued by him on every day on which he causes or permits it to be so displayed
or exhibited.

(6) An advertisement which contains information calculated to lead directly or indirectly to the deposit of money by the public shall be treated as an advertisement inviting
the public to deposit money.

(7) An advertisement issued by any person on behalf of or to the order of another
person shall be treated as an advertisement issued by that other person and for the purpose of any proceedings under this Act, an advertisement inviting the public to deposit money with a person specified in the advertisement shall be presumed, unless the contrary is proved, to have been issued by the person.

45. Power of the President to proscribe trade union

(1) If the President is satisfied that any trade union, the members of which are employed in a bank, has been engaged in acts calculated to disrupt the economy of Nigeria, he may by order published in the Gazette proscribe that union (hereafter in this section referred to as “a proscribed union”) which shall, as from the date of the order, cease to
exist.

(2) A proscribed union shall, not later than fourteen days from the date of the order
under subsection (1) of this section, surrender its certificate of registration to the Registrar who shall take such steps in relation to the distribution of the assets of the union as he deems necessary or in accordance with the registered rules of the union.

(3) No person who immediately before the date of an order under this section was an
officer of a proscribed union shall at any time after that date be an officer of any trade
union any of the members of which are employed by a bank.

(4) If the certificate of registration of a proscribed union is not delivered to the Registrar as required under subsection (2) of this section, every person who immediately before the proscription of the union was an officer thereof is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine of #5,000 or to imprisonment for six months or to both such fine and imprisonment.

(5) Any person who contravenes subsection (3) of this section is guilty of an offence
and liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of five years without an option of a
fine.

(6) In this section-

“officer” in relation to a union, means any person holding official position in that
trade union and, accordingly, includes in particular, any president, secretary or treasurer
thereof and every member of the committee of management however described;

“Registrar” means the Registrar of Trade Unions appointed under section 46 of the
Trade Unions Act.

46. Closure of bank during a strike

(1) No bank shall incur any liability to any of its customers by reason only of failure
on the part of the bank to open for business during a strike.

(2) If as a result of a strike, a bank fails to open for business, the bank shall, within 24
hours of the beginning of the closure, obtain the approval of the Bank for any continued
closure of the bank.

47. Prohibition of the receipt of commissions, etc., by staff of banks

(1) Any director, manager, officer or employee of a bank or any other person receiving remuneration from the bank, who asks for, receives, consents or agrees to receive any gift, commission, employment, service, gratuity, money, property or thing of value for his own personal benefit or advantage or for that of any of his relations, from any person-

(a)              for procuring or endeavouring to procure for any person any advances, loans or
credit facility from the bank;

(b)              for the purpose or discount of any draft, note, cheque, bill of exchange or other
obligation by that bank; or

(c)       for permitting any person to overdraw any account with that bank without
proper authority or compliance with rules and guidelines for that purpose,

is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to pay to the Bank a fine of #50,000 or
imprisonment for a term of five years or to both such fine and imprisonment and in addition any such gift or any other commission shall be forfeited to the Federal Government.

[1998 No. 38.]

(2) The provisions of subsection (I) of this section shall not in any manner derogate
from, and shall be without prejudice to any other written law relating to corruption or
illegal gratification.

48. Disqualification and exclusion of certain individuals from management of
banks

(1) Every bank shall, before appointing any director or chief executive, seek and obtain the Bank’s written approval for the proposed appointment.

(2) No person shall be appointed or shall remain a director, secretary or an officer of
a bank who-

(a)                    is of unsound mind or as a result of ill health is incapable of carrying out his
duties; or

(b)                   is declared bankrupt or suspends payments or compounds with his creditors

including his bankers; or

(c)                     is convicted of any offence involving dishonesty or fraud; or

(d)                    is guilty of serious misconduct in relation to his duties; or

(e)             in the case of a person possessed of professional qualification, is disqualified
or suspended (otherwise than of his own request) from practising his profession in Nigeria by the order of any competent authority made in respect of him
personally.

(3) No person who has been a director of or directly concerned in the management of
a bank which has been wound up by the Federal High Court shall, without the express
authority of the Governor, act or continue to act as a director of, or be directly concerned
in the management of any other bank.

(4) Any person whose appointment with a bank has been terminated or who has been
dismissed for reasons of fraud, dishonesty or conviction for an offence involving dishonesty or fraud shall not be employed by any bank in Nigeria.

(5) Any bank which knowingly acts in contravention of subsection (1), (2), (3) or (4)
of this section is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine of N100,000.

[1999 No. 40.]

(6) Where an offence committed by a bank under subsection (4) of this section is
proved to have been committed with the knowledge or connivance of any director, man-
ager or any other officer of the bank, he, as well as the bank, is guilty of an offence and
the director, manager or any other officer of the bank shall on conviction be liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than five years or to a fine of N50,000 or to both such imprisonment and fine.

[1990 No. 40.]

(7) It shall not be a defence for any director, manager or officer of a bank to claim
that he is not aware of the provisions of subsection (4) of this section, except if he can
prove that he had obtained prior clearance of such a person from the secretary of the
Banker’s Committee who maintains a register of terminated, dismissed or convicted staff
of banks on the ground of fraud or dishonesty.

Miscellaneous Matters

49. Offences by companies; etc., and by servants and agents

(1) Where any offence against any provision of this Act has been committed by a
body corporate or firm, any person who was a director, manager, secretary or other similar officer of the body corporate or firm purporting to act in such capacity shall, in addition to the body corporate or firm, be deemed to be guilty of that offence unless he proves that the offence was committed without his consent or connivance and that he exercised all such diligence to prevent the commission of the offence as he ought to have exercised
having regard to the nature of his functions in that capacity and to all the circumstances.

(2) Where any person would be liable under this Act to any punishment or penalty
for any act, omission, neglect or default, he shall be liable to the same punishment or
penalty for every such act, omission, neglect or default of any clerk, servant or agent or
the clerk or servant of such agent:

Provided that such act, omission, neglect or default was committed by the clerk or
servant in the course of his employment or by the agent when acting in the course of his
employment in such circumstances that had the act, omission, neglect or default been
committed by the agent, his principal would have been liable under this section.

50. Offences by directors and managers of banks

Any person, being a director or manager of a bank, who fails to-

(a)              take all reasonable steps to secure compliance by the bank with the requirements of this Act; or

(b)              take all reasonable steps to secure the correctness of any statement submitted
under the provisions of this Act,

is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a tine not exceeding N50,000 or to imprisonment for a term of three years or to both such fine and imprisonment.

[1997 No.4. 1998 No. 38.]

51. Penalties for offences not otherwise provided for

Any bank which contravenes or fails to comply with any of the provisions of this Act
or any regulations made thereunder for which an offence or penalty is not expressly pro-
vided is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding N50,000.

[1997 No.4. 1998 No. 38.]

52. Sharing of revenues from penalties

All revenues collected as a result of penalties imposed by this Act or any other penal-
ties for which the Bank is responsible for collection shall be shared in the ratio of 20 per
cent to the Bank, IO per cent to the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation and 70 per
cent to the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

[1997 No.4.]

53. Protection against adverse claims

(1) Neither the Federal Government nor the Bank nor any officer of that Government
or Bank, shall be subject to any action, claim or demand by or liability to any person in
respect of anything done or omitted to be done in good faith in pursuance or in execution
of, or in connection with the execution or intended execution of any power conferred
upon that Government, the Bank or such officer, by this Act.

(2) For the purpose of this section, the Minister or any officer duly acting on his be-
half shall be deemed to be an officer of the Federal Government and the Governor, any
Deputy Governor of the Bank or other employee thereof or any person holding any office
therein or appointed by the Bank under subsection (2) of section 33 of this Act, shall be
deemed to be an officer of the Bank.

54. Priority of local deposit liabilities

Where a bank is unable to meet its obligations or suspends payment, the assets of the
bank in the Federation shall be available to meet all the deposit liabilities of the bank and
such deposit liabilities shall have priority over all other liabilities of the bank.

55. Application of Companies and Allied Matters Act

(1) The provisions of this Act shall apply without prejudice to the provisions of the
Companies and Allied Matters Act in so far as they relate to banks and to winding up by
the Federal High Court.

[Cap. C20.]

(2) Where any of the provisions of the Companies and Allied Matters Act are inconsistent with the provisions of this Act, the provisions of this Act shall prevail.

56. Application of Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation Act

The provisions of this Act shall apply without prejudice to the provisions of the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation Act and where any of the provisions of this Act are
inconsistent with any provisions of that Act, the provisions of this Act shall prevail.

[Cap. N102.]

57. Power to make regulations

(1) The Governor may make regulations, published in the Federal Gazette, to give
full effect to the objects and objectives of this Act.

(2) Without prejudice to the provisions of subsection (1) of this section, the Governor
may make rules and regulations for the operations and control of all institutions under the
supervision of the Bank.

[1998 No. 38.]

PART II

Other Financial Institutions

58. Prohibition of unlicensed financial institutions

(1) Without prejudice to the provisions of Part I of this Act, no person shall carryon
other financial business in Nigeria other than insurance and stock broking except if it is a
company duly incorporated in Nigeria and holds a valid licence granted under section 59
of this Act.

(2) Any person or institution which, before the commencement of this Act was carrying on such other financial business as are referred to under subsection (1) of this section, shall apply in writing to the Bank for a licence within six months from the date of commencement of this Act.

(3) Any person or institution which fails to apply as provided in subsection (2) of this
section, shall cease to carryon such financial business.

59Application for licence

(1) Any person wishing to carryon other financial business other than insurance and
stock broking in Nigeria shall apply in writing to the Bank for the grant of a licence and
shall accompany the application with the following-

(a)              a draft copy of the memorandum and articles of association of the proposed
financial business;

(b)              such other information, documents and reports as the Bank may, from time to
time, specify; and

(c)       the prescribed application fee.

(2) After the applicant has provided all such information, documents and reports as
the Bank may require under subsection (1) of this section, the Bank may grant the licence
with or without conditions or refuse to grant the licence.

(3) Where an application for a licence is granted, the Bank shall give written notice
of that fact to the applicant and the licence fee shall be paid.

(4) The Bank may vary or revoke any conditions subject to which a licence was
granted or may impose fresh or additional conditions to the grant of a licence.

(5) Where the Bank proposes to vary, revoke or impose fresh or additional conditions, the Bank shall before exercising such power, give notice of its intention to the person or institution concerned and give such a person or institution an opportunity to make representation to the Bank thereon.

(6) Any person who transacts business without a valid licence under section 58 of
this Act or subsection (2) of this section, whether in the case of an individual or in the
case of a body corporate, is guilty of an offence and liable-

(a) in the case of a body corporate, to a fine of N 1,000,000; and

      (b) in any other case, to a fine not exceeding N 1,000,000 or imprisonment for a
term not exceeding five years or to both such fine and imprisonment.

 

[1999 No. 40.]

60. Failure to comply with conditions of licence

(1) Any person who fails to comply with any of the conditions of its licence is guilty
of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding N5,000 for each day during
which the condition is not complied with.

[1997 NO.4. 1998 No. 38.]

(2) Every person or institution carrying on such financial business as are referred to
in section 56 of this Act shall-

(a)       comply with the Monetary Policy Guidelines and other directives as the Bank
may, from time to time, specify;

(b)       furnish within the stipulated time any statistical and other return as the Bank
may, from time to time, require.

(3) Any person who fails to comply with paragraph (a) or (b) of subsection (2) of this
section is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term not
less than two years and not exceeding three years or to a fine of N5,000 for each day
during which such failure occurs.

[1997 NO.4. 1998 No. 38.]

(4) Persistent failure to comply with the guidelines or other directives of the Bank or
persistent refusal to supply returns in the prescribed form may be a ground for the revocation of a licence.

61. Supervisory power of the Bank 
(1) The Bank shall have power to-

(a)             supervise and regulate the activities of other financial institutions and specialised banks;

(b)             prescribe the minimum paid-up capital requirement of other financial institutions and specialised banks.

[1998 No. 38.]

(2) The Bank may appoint examiners and any other person to carry out regular or
routine examination of the books and affairs of other financial institutions.

(3) Where the Governor is satisfied that it is in the public interest so to do he may, in
addition to the routine or regular examination, order a special examination or investigation of the books and affairs of any other financial institution and for that purpose, the Governor shall have power to appoint one or more qualified persons other than the officers of the Bank to conduct special examination or investigation, under conditions of confidentiality, of the books and affairs of such other financial institution.

(4) The cost and expenses of the Bank or the remuneration of the person so appointed, as the case may be, shall be payable from the fund and property of the financial
institution.

62. Control of failing other financial institutions

(1) If, after taking such of the steps stipulated in section 35 of this Act such other measures as in the opinion of the Bank may be appropriate in the circumstance, the state of affairs of the other financial institution concerned does not improve, the Bank may turn over the control and management of such other financial institution to an appointed
person on such terms and conditions as the Bank may stipulate, from time to time.

(2) If, after taking such steps as specified in subsection (1) of this section as in the opinion of the Governor may be appropriate in each circumstance, the state of affairs of
the other financial institution concerned does not improve, the Bank shall have power to revoke the licence of such other financial institution.

[1998 No. 38.]

(3) Any other financial institution whose licence is revoked pursuant to subsection (2) of this section shall be wound up by a person appointed by the Bank.

[1998 No. 38.]

(4) The cost and expenses of the Bank or the remuneration of the person so appointed
pursuant to subsection (1) of this section shall be payable from the fund and property of
the financial institution.

[1998 No. 38.]

63. Application of Act to other financial institutions

The provisions of section 35 of this Act shall apply with such necessary modifications
to other financial institutions.

[1999 No. 40.]
PART III

Miscellaneous and Supplementary

64. Failure to comply with rules, etc.

(1) Notwithstanding any of the provisions of this Act, the Governor may impose a penalty not exceeding N2,0000,000 or suspension of any licence issued to a bank or any other financial institution for the bank’s or other financial institution’s failure to complyN with any rules, regulations, guidelines or administrative directives made, given or issued by the Bank under this Act.

[1998 No. 38.]

(2) The Governor may suspend any licence issued or given to any bank or any other
financial institution which fails to comply with any rules, regulations, guidelines or administrative directives made, given or issued to it by the Bank under this Act.

[1997 No.4.]

65. Powers as to offences and the Attorney-General’s fiat

(1) The Governor of the Bank may compound any offence punishable under this Act
by accepting such sums of money as he thinks fit, not exceeding the amount of maximum
fine to which that person would have been liable if he had been convicted of the offence.
[1998 No. 38.]

(2) Any monies paid to the Governor pursuant to subsection (1) of this section, shall
be paid into the Bank’s penalty account which shall be established for that purpose.

[1999 No. 40.]

(3) No prosecution in respect of any offence under this Act shall be instituted without

The consent in writing of the Attorney-General of the Federation

[1998 No. 38.]

66. Interpretation

In this Act unless the context otherwise requires-

“associate” means a company in which another company owns not less than twenty
per cent of the shares;

“bank” means a bank licensed under this Act;

“Bank” means the Central Bank of Nigeria;

“banking business” means the business of receiving deposits on current account, savings account or other similar account, paying or collecting cheques, drawn by or paid in by customers; provision of finance or such other business as the Governor may, by order published in the Federal Gazette, designate as banking business;

“chief executive” in relation to a bank means a person by whatever name called, who either individually or jointly with one or more other persons, is responsible, subject to the authority of the board of directors, for the conduct of the business and administration of the bank;

“commercial bank” means a bank in Nigeria whose business includes the acceptance
of deposits withdrawable by cheques;

“community bank” means a bank whose business is restricted to a specified geo-
graphical area in Nigeria;

“deposit” means money lodged with any person whether or not for the purpose of
any interest or dividend and whether or not such money is repayable upon demand upon a
given period of notice or upon a fixed date;

“Deputy Governor” means a Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria;

“director” includes any person by whatever name he may be referred to carrying out or empowered to carry out substantially the same functions of a director in relation to the affairs of a company incorporated under the Companies and Allied Matters Act;

“factoring” means the business of acquiring debts due to any person;

“Federation” means the Federal Republic of Nigeria;

“Governor” means the Governor or any of the Deputy Governors of the Central
Bank of Nigeria;

“leasing” means the business of letting or sub-letting movable property on hire for the purpose of the use of such property by the hirer or any other person in any businesS whatsoever and where the lessor is the owner of the property regardless of whether the letting is with or without an option to purchase the property;

“licence” means a licence issued under this Act;

“merchant bank” means a bank whose business includes receiving deposits on deposit account, provisions of finance, consultancy and advisory services relating to corporate and investment matters, making or managing investments on behalf of any person;

“Minister” means the Minister charged with the responsibility for finance;

“other financial institution” means any individual, body, association or group of persons, whether corporate or unincorporated, other than the banks licensed under this
Act which carries on the business of a discount house, finance company and money brokerage and whose principal objects include factoring, project financing, equipment leasing, debt administration, fund management, private ledger services, investment management, local purchases, order financing, export finance, project consultancy, financial consultancy, pension fund management and such other business as the Bank may, from time to time, designate;

[1998 No. 38.]

“President” means the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria;

“profit and loss sharing bank” means a bank which transacts investment or commercial banking business and maintains profit and loss sharing accounts;

“relation of person” includes father, mother, child, brother, sister, uncle, aunt and
cousins where applicable, and their spouses;

“shareholders funds” means the aggregate of paid-up share capital, statutory and all
other reserves;

“specialised banks” includes Nigerian Industrial Development Bank, Nigerian Agricultural and Co-operative Bank, Nigerian Export Import Bank, Nigerian Bank for Commerce and Industry, the Urban Development Bank, Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria and all Primary Mortgage Institutions, Community Banks, Peoples Bank of Nigeria and such other banks as may be designated from time to time;

[1998 No. 38.]

“State” means any of the States of the Federation.

67. Short title

This Act may be cited as the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act.

 

SUBSIDIARY LEGISLATION

No Subsidiary Legislation

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