ABUJA, OCTOBER 13, 2016 – The bankers’ committee has assured the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) that it would halt any plans of mass retrenchment within the Nigerian banking industry.This was disclosed by ‘Tokunbo Martins, director of CBN banking supervision, after the Bankers’ Committee meeting in Lagos on Wednesday evening.
“One of the things we discussed was about the impending retrenchment in the banking industry. So, we understand that many bank workers are expressing fears about possible retrenchment in the industry,” she said.
“We discussed and the banks are now committed to not retrenching their staff, going forward. So, whatever rumours are flying around that mass retrenchment is happening or not happening, that is not true.
Martins assured the public after the meeting that he was sure that all banks were strong and stable. She added that there was enough buffer to pull through the crisis.
“The banks are adequately capitalised, so the report is not true,” she said.
“That does not mean that the banking sector is not feeling the economic headwinds. The headwinds are also in every other jurisdiction.
“It is not strange. So, non-performing loans at 11.7 per cent is not what we should focus on. The underlying assets of the banks are still there, and they are good. So, I think you should totally dispel or ignore that type of story.
“It should be expected to have non-performing loans (NPLs). It is not the reason why any jurisdiction should be demonized. There are other jurisdictions that have NPLs as high as 15 per cent, 35 per cent and so on.”
Fitch, one of the big three rating agencies in the world, also raised the alarm on NPLs within the Nigerian banking sector, while warning against a possible downgrade in the future.