By Goddy Egene
The sale of the three nationalised banks – Keystone Bank Limi-ted, Mainstreet Bank Limited and Enterprise Bank Limited – will be done in two years’ time, the Managing Director of Asset Management Corporation of Nigerian (AMCON), Mr. Mustapha Chike-Obi, has said.
The AMCON boss made this disclosure while responding to jurnalists’ enquiries on the sale of the banks in Abuja last Monday.
Chike-Obi had been quoted as saying last August that 15 local and foreign investors had shown strong interest in the three banks, which according to him, were higher than the number of investors that had targeted the banks in the period it operated as rescued banks.
He had attributed the high interest shown by investors to the fact that the banks had been fully recapitalised and had just one shareholder, which is AMCON.
Despite the high interest shown by investors to acquire the banks, Chike-Obi said AMCON was not in a haste to sell the banks.
According to him, the sale of the banks required due diligence on the investors to ensure that they ascertain the sources of their funds, adding that series of approvals were equally involved.
He explained that failure to follow due process would be counterproductive and might attract complaints from the public.
“We will have to get all needed approvals from CBN and any other relevant institutions. If hurriedly we sell the banks, the public will shout and accuse us of not following due process,” Chike-Obi stated.
He explained that the banks were now making profit, and were also efficiently managed in line with the corporate governance standards, stressing that the sale of the banks did not pose any challenge.
After its nationalisation of the rescued banks, AMCON which was believed to be the biggest individual shareholder in the banks with 14 per cent holding in the defunct Mainstreet Bank; 45 per cent stake in Keystone and 70 per cent in Enterprise Bank, became the sole owner of the banks.
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