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Reps direct CBN to stop sale of Polaris bank

The house of Representatives has resolved to direct the central bank of Nigeria (CBN) to suspend the sale of Polaris Bank PLC.

This is sequel to a motion by a member from Imo state, Henry Nwawuba at plenary.

Mr Nwawuba had argued that it would enable the apex bank, the NDIC and the assets management corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) to conclude all processes for an open competitive bid in line with best practices and procedures.

According to the lawmaker, the proposed sale is shrouded in secrecy and requires that it is done with transparency and accountability to eliminate insinuations of corruption.

He insisted that the measure is necessary to avert public outcry and untoward reaction from critical stakeholders in the economy.

Adopting the motion, the house resolved to appoint an Ad-Hoc Committee of the House for 21 days, to review the total outlay by the Federal Government in Polaris Bank and account for the entire financial input in the bank by the Federal Government through the CBN, the NDIC and AMCON.

The Committee is to determine whether the conditions and terms of sale are likely to ensure a positive return on public funds thus far committed to the bank, whether as bailout funds or other investments.

The committee is also to make recommendations to the House for any further legislative or other action necessary to ensure that the public funds committed to Polaris Bank are appropriately documented, accounted for and made good on.

Reporting by Ibrahim Shehu; Editing by Abdullahi Lamino and Tony Okerafor