By Chinyere Joel-Nwokeoma
Lagos, Sept. 3, 2018 Four commercial banks donated a total of N980 million to the Nigerian Police Force in 2017 to support its activities, with the banks incurring the wrath of their shareholders.
A breakdown of the figures contained in the commercial banks’ 2017 annual reports obtained by NAN showed that UBA gave the sum of N300 million during the review period.
Speaking on the contributions, Mr Moses Igbrude, Publicity Secretary, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria, said that the donations were not voluntary but imposed on banks in the name of improving security.
Igbrude said the donations should be voluntarily and not by force, noting that it was not the duty of the banks to fund the Police Force.
“While I have no problem with corporate bodies contributing or donating toward improving or assisting the NPF it should not be by force or seen as if it is the banks’ duty to fund the Police Force.
“Anything that increases expenses and reduces the value of an investment is not what shareholders will support,” he said.
Igbrude said the burden on banks was so much, and that they provide everything for themselves despite the taxes they paid to the government.
“A branch of a bank is like a local government, it provides water, light, security and other things necessary to run that branch.
“You want banks to create employment, to kick start the economy by providing funding yet they are burdened with various impediment like AMCON levies, among others.
“So what is the role of government in all these?” Igbrude asked.
He said the government and the regulators should allow the managements of banks to contribute to security through their individual corporate social responsibility initiatives rather than by compulsion.
Mr Boniface Okezie, National Coordinator, Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria, said there was nothing wrong with the donations provided it was channelled for specified purpose.
Okezie said banks should identify urgent needs of the police such as accommodation or provision portable boreholes.
He said the provision of basic amenities would be preferable instead of donating cash.
Okezie said shareholders should not be shortchanged, and that every fund was important when it had to do with return on investment.
Also speaking, Mazi Okechukwu Unegbu, former President, Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, said it was the responsibility of the government to provide security for its citizens and to make the business environment right for businesses to thrive.
He said the donations by banks were meant to secure banks facilities and the environment around the banks, noting that the support started a long time ago.
Unegbu said the question remained whether the police utilised the money for the purpose it was meant.
He said the banks were trying in terms of support but could not control the police or do more than contributing the money.
According to him, in other countries banks do not fund the Police because they have good security environment contributed by various police divisions unlike Nigeria where it is centralised.
He, however, called on banks to sponsor specific projects that would affect the lives of the police instead of donating funds.
“Since the Police assist the banks in security matter, it is important that part of the CSR be spent on them as organisations not individuals.
“For example, purchase of vehicles for operations can be taken up under CSR, not building police station.
However, Mr Nnamdi Okonkwo, Fidelity Bank Managing Director, told the shareholders recently that it was an initiative of the Bankers’ Committee aimed at supporting the Nigerian Police.
Okonkwo said that the committee agreed to support the police by equipping them and as well as provide other things needed to make their jobs easier.
Edited by Salif Atojoko
- Yuletide: Stop using fake, substandard tyres to avoid road crashes- Olagunju
- NDLEA destroys 11,669 kg of illicit drugs worth N1.65bn in Nasarawa
- British Council presents development grants to women groups in Adamawa
- UN wants Somali youth to promote human rights protection for stability
- Institute solicits FG’s support to provide detailed survey, soil resources mapping
- Boris Johnson under fire as health survey finds many die in emergency wait
- 4 Brigade Troops arrest 5 for suspected murder, armed robbery
- Russian separatists in Ukraine signal support for peace deal
- Minister expresses concern over human trafficking
- Experts advocate mental health therapy for GBV victims
- Yuletide: Oyeyemi warns transport unions against overloading, speeding
- Israel reaffirms commitment to partnering Nigeria on agric technology, entrepreneurship devt
- Promote rule of law over self interest, Oyo Speaker urges lawyers
- Berlin declares emergency in climate
- Emir of Karaye lauds NMA over contribution to community health
- Nigeria Immigration Service Deputy CG, Anene, retires
- SWAN commends Gov. Abdulrazaq over baseball park renovation
- Germany working on defense system to protect airports from drones
- Buhari calls for multilateral approach to combat terrorism
- NECO: EFCC arrests vice-principal, 2 others over exam malpractice in Ilorin
- No reprieve for Hungary in EU grilling over rule of law concerns
- Without convergence, single currency will be catastrophic – ECOWAS Commission President
- Forgive me, Fayose begs aggrieved PDP members
- $22.7 loan request meant for infrastructure- FG
- A’Ibom 2020 budget: Group says N4bn for education “too paltry”
- Katsina state govt. establishes 5 new irrigation schemes
- Sudan: Al-Bashir questioned over 1989 coup that brought him to power
- FG launches N46.83bn agric. scheme in 9 oil producing states
- Zambia gov’t says ready for talks to abolish death penalty
- Oyo govt. reinstates 300 sacked workers
- CBi launches National Integrity Barometer to tackle corruption
- World’s richest countries need to behave like adults in climate fight – Kerry
- Kingmakers seek court order against inauguration of new Kano Council of Chiefs
- UNFPA calls for enhanced youths’ rights to drive development
- NGO demands prosecution of those caught embezzling public funds
- IAAF grant: Nobody accused Gusau of complicity, says acting president
- FG committed to University of Agriculture, Zuru’s take-off in 2020-Nanono
- Alleged P&ID scam: My bank supplied your coy account statements to EFCC, GTB staff tells Briton
- Khashoggi murder: U.S. bars former Saudi diplomat in Turkey from entering U.S.
- Ikoyi Lion: Lagos to enact law criminalising keeping dangerous animals as pets
- 1.4m Ekiti residents still practise open defecation-UNICEF
- Senate wants unemployment rate checked
- Institute of Soil Science inducts 150 soil scientists
- Don’t travel at night – NYSC DG warns corps members
- NCC committed to curbing financial fraud-Adewolu
- Residents urge rehabilitation of Hatchery Road in Abakaliki
- 2 Abuja varsity students in court over alleged conspiracy in the drowning of friend
- Bill for Imo lotteries board scales 2nd reading
- INEC meets Oke Ogun, Ogbomoso communities over location of Oyo North collation centre
- Human Rights Day: NHRC, others call for youth involvement in decision making