Lawmakers threaten to bar UBA, GT Bank, 4 others from import duty collection

Reps probe NPA over $1bn ‘secret account’

 

The House of Representatives Committee on Customs and Excise has threatened to stop six banks from collecting import duty on behalf of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS). 

The affected banks are GT Bank, Wema Bank, Providus Bank, UBA, Ecobank and Standard Chartered Bank.

The Chairman of the Committee, Leke Abejide, while speaking at a public hearing at the National Assembly Complex in Abuja on Wednesday, gave the banks two weeks to reconcile their accounts with the committee’s consultant.

Abejide said the committee will direct the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to deduct all outstanding obligations due to the government from the accounts of the respective banks if they fail to reconcile their accounts with the committee within 14 days. 

According to the interim report of the committee’s consultant, Ecobank has an outstanding commitment of N4.39 billion to the government. The bank is yet to provide the remittance data of the defunct Oceanic Bank, which it acquired in 2011. Also, Standard Chartered Bank has an outstanding sum of N2.44 billion unremitted to the purse of the government while Providus Bank has an outstanding of N66.8 million.

United Bank of Africa (UBA) has an outstanding sum of N3.01 billion to be remitted to the government while the reconciliation of the account of GT Bank is still ongoing, according to the interim report.

“Reconcile with our consultants. We are giving you 14 days to do so. Anything after the said days, we will bring out the big stick against you by asking CBN to deduct from source, and we will also delete you from Customs duties collection,” Abejide said.



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