The House of Representatives has adopted a report which recommended that 16 commercial banks be penalised and made to pay accruing interests for not remitting N1.6 billion stamp duties into federation account.
The report was presented at the Committee of the Whole by Rep. Abubakar Ahmad (APC- Adamawa) on Thursday in Abuja.
But for First Bank Plc and First City Monument Bank, Wema Bank and Suntrust Bank that failed to honour invitations the House suggested they should be investigated on the alleged financial misdemeanour.
In fact, a copy of the report is headed for the Presidency for necessary action.
The banks indicted and the amount under remitted are Diamond Bank (Now Access Bank) N545,873,950, Unity Bank N40,099,100, Zenith Bank N265,635,650, Providus Bank N646,650, Fidelity Bank N32,888,400, Keystone Bank N24,471,050 and UBA N81,087,149, Guarantee Trust Bank (GTB) N198,326,300, Standard Chartered Bank, N3,658,193, Citi Bank N1,860,850 and Standard IBTC N231,094,565
ECO Bank N78,527,004, and Jaiz Bank N2,436,150, Access Bank N66,092,350, Skye Bank N11,057,700 and Polaris Bank N2,907,550,” the report said.
It stated that all banks that were found not to have made full disclosure on stamp duty collections and remittances should be further investigated.
According to report, financial institutions especially the Debt Management Bureau (DMB) should remit all collections with respect to government revenue promptly and correctly, and where remittances are not promptly done, the DMBs should be sanctioned.
It recommended that a machinery be put in place to allow recovery of under remittances after further reconciliation is carried out with the banks concerned.
The report also recommended that all the banks that have cases of delayed remittances should be penalised.
According to the report, in view of the apparent lack of transparency on the part of most financial institutions, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) should strengthen its supervisory activity to ensure that banks report and remit all government’s revenue correctly and promptly.
It stated that the CBN should also ensure that directives sent to financial institutions are followed to the later.
The committee conducted a public hearing on May 15, 2019 in the cause of its investigation where all relevant stakeholders were invited.