Unity Bank gains most in 3 months after clarifying N7bn allegation

Unity Bank gains most in 3 months after clarifying N7bn allegation

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Investors on the Nigerian stock exchange (NSE) market responded positively to Unity bank’s clarification on N7 billion allegations levy against it by the special presidential investigation panel (SPIPRPP).

According to a report released on the NSE, the bank stated it is false and unfounded.

The mid-tier bank on Monday recorded its biggest gain in the last 3 months after stock price rallied 9.23 percent to N0.71, increasing shareholders value by N70.14 million to N8.29 billion.

This was upon the bank’s statement released on the NSE refuting allegations by SPIPRPP which saw the price of stock pick up after an early trade selloff witnessed on the stock.

In September 2018, a team of the SPIPRPP visited the bank as part of its special investigation into banking transactions of the government for the period 2009 to 2018.

As stated by Unity bank, the panel requested the bank to provide certain information and solely relied on the information provided for the “special” investigation.

“Throughout the review, the panel refused to invite the MDAs to any of the meetings to corroborate the bank’s records neither was any adhoc investigative process initiated to validate the SPIPRPP findings,” Unity bank explained.

According to SPRPRPP, the N7 billion represents the sum of $15,561,769.99 and N1,488,455,810.90, being excess and arbitrary charges on accounts of some agencies of government by the bank before the institution of Treasury Single Account (TSA).

The statement said the agencies from whose accounts the excess and arbitrary charges had been deducted by the bank included the Nigerian Ports Authority, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the Nigeria Customs Service, the Kaduna Refinery and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency.

The panel in an earlier letter requested the bank to accept culpability and pay off a certain sum deemed outstanding which the bank objected and insisted on completing the reconciliation exercise on the basis that the claims presented against the bank is unfounded.

“It is therefore surprising for the SPIPRPP to do volt face and issue a statement alleging sabotage when it abandoned its sitting and investigation whilst reconciliation was still on-going with the bank,” Unity bank stated.

Analysis of the year-to-date performance of Unity bank, as shown that the value of shareholder’s investments had been eroded by 33.6 percent. Shareholders have therefore lost a whooping sum of N4.2 billion in market value.


David Ibidapo

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