By Kunle Adedoyin
Latest figure by the National Bureau of Statistics has revealed that about 3,891 firms and other debtors have taken individual loans above N1bn, totaling N13.19tn of loans in the banking sector.
The data also revealed that the total loans in the banking sector stood at N15.35tn as of the end of March.
From the data, 1,205 debtors who had collected loans between N500m and N1bn currently owed banks N744.72bn.
The figure revealed that 4,441 debtors owed banks between N100m and N500m each; while 3,486 debtors who took loans of between N50m and N100m owed banks N229.56bn.
The statistics also showed that 17,883 debtors who took loans of between N10m and N50m owed banks N382.6bn; while 87,485 debtors who took loans of between N1m and N10m owed banks about N286.98bn.
In the data, 2.2 million debtors who took loans up to N1m owed banks N122bn.
Banking sector’s non-performing loans stood at N1.676tn as of the end of March 2019.
The gross loans recorded in the banking sector stood at N15.480tn, while the loans after specific provisions stood at N13.739tn in the period under review.
The ratio of the non-performing loans to total loans was 10.83 per cent, while non-performing loans to total loans after specific provisions was 12.2 per cent
The figure of non-performing loans at the end of 2018 was N1.792tn, while the gross loans and loans after specific provisions were N15.35tn and N13.562tn, respectively.
The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, Ahmed Kuru, said the chronic debtors of the corporation were occupying top government positions.
He also said the corporation was working with other agencies such as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission, and the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation to produce a full-length television documentary on the notorious and recalcitrant obligors.
Kuru said the idea was to document in a permanent format for generations yet unborn, to know the so-called big men and women that were behind the over N5tn debt burden, which AMCON was battling to recover.
The worrisome aspect of the issue, he said unlike what happened in other climes, was that these obligors still manipulated their way to emerge as members of the National Assembly, ministers, chairmen and women of big organisations and pro-chancellors of universities.
Kuru added, “Sadly, these are the calibre of people we respect in Nigeria but these people are not role models. How can you be a role model, when you cannot honour a simple obligation?
“That is why I have been consistent in the call for the return of the Failed Bank Act. The way we are handling the issue in the country suggests that we are encouraging a lot of financial rascality.”
He said people should be held accountable for their actions, which would serve as a deterrent to others.