In reaction to the court directive to remit $793.2 million allegedly hidden in seven commercial banks, UBA, Fidelity Bank and Sterling Bank have denied having any such monies in their possession.
Although Skye bank admitted holding money, it denied hiding it from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
On Thursday, a judge of a federal high court in Lagos, Chuka Obiozor, ordered the seven banks to remit various amounts allegedly kept in their custody to the designated CBN asset recovery dollars account.
In separate statements, UBA Plc, Fidelity and Sterling said they do not have government money in their possession.
Skye Bank also made clarifications in a statement.
“The management of Skye Bank hereby states that it neither colluded nor unilaterally hid the reported sum or any other funds in its custody,” the statement read.
“On the contrary, the said funds are held with the full knowledge of the relevant agencies of the government including the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the DSS, the national assembly and the inspector general of police’ special investigation panel, with whom we have engaged extensively over same.
“The bank will take appropriate legal steps in response to the ruling of the federal high court on August 8, 2017, when the substantive hearing is expected to come up.”
On its own part, UBA said it had paid the federal government all the money due and that the central bank of Nigeria (CBN) had cleared it.
Fidelity bank said it did not owe the federal government $24.5 million and that it had contacted the government treasurer to understand what account it was referring to.
“Our attention has been drawn to reports in certain online publications of an order by the federal high court sitting in Lagos on Thursday, July 20, 2017 mandating Sterling bank Plc to remit the sum of $46.5m to a designated federal government asset recovery account with the central bank of Nigeria,” a statement signed by Henry Bassey, Sterling bank’s chief marketing officer, brand management and communications read.
First Bank, Diamond Bank and Keystone Bank have not made any statement on the issue.