The Director, Corporate Communications, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Mr Isaac Okoroafor has said that no money is missing or stolen from the bank’s coffers as reported in some section of the media.
Okoroafor said this in a statement on Sunday while reacting to a recent article and audio clips in which the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, and other senior officials were heard discussing discrepancies in the bank’s accounts.
Okoroafor said that the audio was distorted in a manner which creates a different impression of the matter being discussed, which was to proffer solutions to a misunderstanding that affected the Bank’s balance sheet.
“As publicly known the CBN was approached in 2015 by the National Economic Management Team and the National Economic Council chaired by the Vice President, to assist State Governments with Conditional Budget Support.
“This happened in the aftermath of the significant nose-dive in global oil prices and associated FAAC allocations.
“In order to ensure that ordinary Nigerian workers got their salaries, pensions and gratuities, and that the economy continued to recover from recession, the Bank provided about N650 billion in loans at 9 per cent with a two-year grace period to 35 States of the Federation.
“These monies were distributed to the states monthly with documented approval of the Federal Ministry of Finance and the Presidency.
“In closing the Bank’s 2018 accounts, external auditors in their Draft Account, erroneously classified about N150 billion of these loans as bad, which negatively affected the Bank’s Balance Sheet and shareholders fund.
“The selective conversation being circulated was simply a discussion to ascertain why the auditors took that position and next steps to resolving it.”