…CBN denies rumours of de-marketing Heritage Bank
By Odunewu Segun
Just as the shares of Skye Bank Plc fell by 9.5 per cent to lead the Nigerian Stock Exchange’s price losers’ chart, the new Group Managing Director of the bank, Tokunbo Abiru has assured customers and shareholders that the bank remain healthy and strong.
Skye Bank shares fell from N1.00 to close at N0.95 per share, suffering a 36 per cent value erosion year-to-date, falling by N1.50 to N0.95 per share and underperforming the NSE All-Share Index which has appreciated 1.26 per cent YTD.
Abiru, who outlined his vision for the bank, said his team would harness the expertise and skills of the bank’s employees and the reconstituted board to take the lender to new heights. He noted that as a Systematically Important Bank (SIB) bank, the lender occupies a sensitive role in the financial life of Nigerians and West Africa.
Meanwhile, the Central Bank of Nigeria has reacted to the speculations going around that it is planning to de-market Heritage Bank.
A senior official of the CBN, said: “Other than this sudden movement of all public sector funds to the apex bank, Heritage Bank remains one of the healthiest and well managed banks in Nigeria. Its internal mechanisms and controls are strong and the bank has practically overcome the shock most banks suffered as result of the domiciliation of all public sector funds with the regulator following the full implementation of the TSA regime.”
Reacting to an online media platform that linked Sky Bank former Chairman, Dr. Tunde Ayeni and Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki to Heritage Bank ownership, a shareholder of the Bank, Alhaji Musa Ibrahim Misau, said Ayeni has less than one per cent share in Heritage Bank and Saraki has no shares or any form of ownership stakes in the bank
“It is not a secret that the owners and key shareholders in Heritage Bank bought off the defunct Societe Generale Bank (SGBN) which was owned by the Saraki family. The Saraki family was out-rightly bought out. “The family, including Dr. Saraki does not have a dime in Heritage Bank. We have in just a few years built this bank to a colossus that has become the envy of the sector and we are not going to sit by and allow ill-intentioned persons to de-market Heritage Bank,” he said.