Forensic audit that was commissioned by the new Board of Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM Bank) has triggered a call by what is believed to be faceless group, known as Awareness for Good Governance Group (AGGG) for the removal of the bank’s chairman, Dr. Okwu Joseph Nnanna over trumped up of fraud.
Findings from sources within the Bank and those close to the audit firm, Price Waterhouse and Coopers (PwC) indicated that there were several violations of laid down procedures, which increased the risk burden of the bank to the extent that non-performing loans (NPLs) of NEXIM rose to about 91 percent of loans granted by the bank.
According to the source, prior to Nnanna’s assumption of office as chairman in March 2018, the NPL of the bank stood at about N48.9 billion out of a total loan portfolio of N53 billion, which negated the corporate pursuit of the bank to have NPLs at a maximum level of 10 percent.
The sources, who alleged wrong doings by a former company secretary of NEXIM, further revealed that about 181 out of 191 loans granted before the assumption of the Nnanna board were non-performing, adding that as many as a third of the documents also did not have supporting or verifiable documents to justify the loan applications and subsequent disbursements.
“That level of fraud within the system is perhaps why the CBN is yet to activate the N500 billion Export Stimulation Fund which was set up to promote non-oil exports in Nigeria.”
A statement by the bank , dismissed the allegations by the AGGG, describing them as misleading and targeted at tarnishing “the reputation of Dr. Nnanna as well as diverting attention from the on-going efforts by the board to address cases of gross mismanagement and poor state of affairs of the Bank under the old management which had since been sacked by the government of President Muhammadu Buhari.”
Meanwhile, the Management of NEXIM has scheduled Monday, May 6 to brief the media on the situation.