Investigations by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), on the level of banks’ involvement in the pension scam have found that some banks actually breached the apex bank’s Know Your Customer (KYC) guidelines.
A CBN official confirmed that the concluded examination revealed that the involved banks failed to carry out the required due diligence measures in the process of opening some of the accounts where the pension monies were domiciled.
He said that the apex bank would soon announce the appropriate sanctions on the banks in line with provisions outlined in the appropriate laws as had earlier announced by Sanusi Lamido, CBN governor.
Sanusi had assured that the banks were being examined and that any bank found involved in the scam would be dealt with.
CBN rolled out the KYC with the understanding that having sufficient information about your customer and making use of such is a most effective weapon against being used to launder the proceeds of crime.
Part of the provisions states, “Failure to comply with the provisions of this manual will attract appropriate sanction in accordance with existing laws”.
It would be recalled that Jonah Ogunniyi Otunla, the Accountant General of the Federation (AGF), last week announced that his office has already recovered a total of N14, 069,421,240.56, illegally deposited in various commercial banks by the Task Team on Pensions and that the recovered money is now safely kept in the CBN vault.
The AGF told members of the Joint Senate Committee on Establishment, Public Service, States and Local Government Administration that the office of the Accountant General of the Federation (OAGF) commenced the comprehensive intervention process on March 30, 2012 and was able to recover all the pensioners’ money in the commercial banks back to the CBN.