• 99% of the depositors have less than N5m

The Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) says it is already in the process of paying depositors of Heritage Bank.

Bello Hassan, Managing Director of NDIC, gave the assurance during a press briefing in Abuja on Wednesday.

Recall that on June 3, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) revoked the banking licence of Heritage Bank following the bank’s “inability to improve its financial performance”.

On the same day, NDIC said it had taken over Heritage Bank as the appointed liquidator.

Speaking at the briefing, Hassan said payment to the insured depositors is expected to be done by the corporation within 30 days of being appointed liquidator, according to Section 28 of the NDIC Act.

He also promised to settle insured customers within one week, adding that the total bank deposits at Heritage Bank stand at N650 billion while its loan portfolio is above N700 billion.

Hassan said the bank’s total depositors are 2.3 million, with 99 percent of them having total balances of less than N5 million.

“They will get all their money back. Only about 4,000 people had more than N5 million in their accounts,” he said.

“They will get N5 million now and more later when the NDIC gets more money from the bank’s assets and loans.

“We need to move as quickly as possible and we are doing that. I can assure you that all the payments will commence this week for the insured deposits.

“We will leverage the bank verification number (BVN) to identify alternate bank accounts of the depositors to pay the maximum amounts of N5 million. While customers without alternate accounts should visit branches of the bank.”

The MD said all depositors are currently being verified for onward payment of insured benefit of N5 million while depositors with insured deposits above N5 million will be paid upon the sale of Heritage Bank’s assets.

Speaking on possible cases of litigation that may arise, the NDIC boss expressed readiness, adding that the judiciary has been asked to expedite cases concerning the liquidation of Heritage Bank.


Hassan also said the corporation is working to ensure that loan repayment is completed within the next six months.

“We have been engaging the judiciary for their support. When cases relating to debt recovery or liquidation generally are brought before them, what we need, the support we need from them is expedited hearing. Let them give it accelerated hearing so that justice can be served,” he said.

“We have been engaging with them (the court) and pleading with them that look, give these cases accelerated hearing and understand that when we bring a debt recovery case before any court the way we are trying to say this person has borrowed from the bank and we establish our case and we want it to be given a selection hearing so that justice is served.

“When money is recovered, it’s not coming to NDIC, you are only collecting to pay depositors, it’s not our money, it’s depositors’ money.

“So if cases are delayed, it is depositors that suffer and they quite appreciate that and we believe that when such cases are brought before them, they will give them accelerated hearing as we solicited from them.”

Hassan also said there are about 116 branches of Heritage Bank across the country and creditors will be paid when the assets of the bank are sold.


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