*Says MFBs is for the ‘economically active poor’
*Defends intervention in defunct Fortis MFB
The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has rebuked rich people patronizing the services of microfinance banks, saying that microfinance banks were established to serve economically active poor people and not the rich.
The Corporation stated this while responding to a complaint by a businesswoman, Mrs Uju Ohanenye, who accused the Corporation of failure to pay the balance of N222.4 million out of the fixed deposit of N301 million she lodged with the defunct Fortis Microfinance Bank (MFB) Plc.
In a statement signed by the Dr. Sunday Oluyemi, Director, Communication & Publication Affairs, NDIC, the Corporation defended the regulatory intervention that led to the revocation of the operating license of the defunct Fortis Microfinance Bank (MFB), vowing it will defend the interest of depositors in the defunct bank saying depositors with funds in excess insured deposit of N500,000 will be paid.
The Corporation stated: “Concerning complaint by a business businesswoman, Mrs Uju Ohanenye, who accused the Corporation of failure to pay the balance of N222.4 million out of the fixed deposit of N301 million she lodged with Fortis Microfinance Bank (MFB) Plc, the NDIC has not failed her.
“Under normal circumstances, the Corporation does not join issues with depositors of failed financial institutions in public for obvious reasons, but because Mrs. Ohanenye has already made the details of her reported petition public, coupled with the fact that the same report is capable of misleading millions of innocent Nigerians particularly on the scope, benefits and limitations of the Deposit Insurance System (DIS) in Nigeria, the NDIC is constrained to issue this statement.
“Mrs. Ohanenye had contacted the Corporation on several occasions where all the issues involved in the matter were painstakingly explained to her. Contrary to her insinuation and accusation that the Corporation allowed Fortis MFB’s Management to defraud customers and had been negligent in the discharge of its duties, the NDIC wishes to make the following clarifications:
“Mrs. Ohanenye approached the Fortis MFB’s IMC and was paid a total of N74.703 million only in two tranches of N18 million and N56.703 million respectively.
“While the first tranche was for the treatment of her ailing husband, the second tranche was paid from the N2 billion approved for the IMC by the CBN in order to ease the hardship experienced by depositors.
“Subsequently, Mrs. Ohanenye was paid another sum of N200, 000 which she was entitled to after the liquidation of Fortis Microfinance Bank (MFB) Plc.
“It is essential for Mrs. Ohanenye and other depositors to be properly advised that microfinance banks were established to provide affordable banking services to the economically “active poor”, that is, the low-income individuals and enterprises, as a way of promoting financial inclusion.”