The Managing Director and CEO, Sterling Bank Plc, Mr. Yemi Adeola, has challenged the Business Recovery and Insolvency Practitioners Association of Nigeria (BRIPAN) to put its ‘house in order’ and assist banks recover the over N1.6trillion bad loan portfolio.
He spoke in Lagos during a courtesy tour of BRIPAN to the bank’s corporate office. Adeola said the association whose members have been practicing independently needs to come under one umbrella to be more relevant in tackling current issues in the financial industry.
“We are going through a phase where there are a lot of delinquent loans in the country and that is bringing the economy down. The association needs to get its house in order by having rules and regulations that will bind its members; when we know that the members of the association are responsible to an umbrella body, we trust them more. They will also act more professionally.
"They will do their jobs diligently because they know that there is a watchdog where they can be reported to: and also work together under an umbrella and influence positive changes in the area of loan recovery, restructuring, amalgamation, liquidation, turnaround among others. Today, we are not seeing enough of that. The association can make that happen,” he told newsmen. The top flight banker said that the Sterling Bank will seek areas of collaboration with the association to find a way of ‘staying ahead’ of its elusive debtors.
While noting that Receivers have not been allowed to function properly as a result of court injunctions secured by debtors, he said that the association under one formidable umbrella could help in correcting some controversial developments. “I am happy that you are beginning to come together. We have requested for a list of members of the association. We are going to profile them and see those we believe will be of service to our organisation and we’ll engage them and make use of them to help us turn round our loan portfolio where we have delinquencies,” he said.
Speaking on the essence of the visit, President, BRIPAN, Mr. Seyi Akinwunmi said: “We are an association of practitioners. We deal with the financial sector. We did a lot of work in the last few years but many of the financial institutions are not aware of how much work we’ve been doing for ourselves and on their behalf and we said we should come and tell them how we can help and what we have been doing to help them in the recovery of their loans and how the legislation affects their work. We also came to formally introduce the association to them and tell them what we are able to do for them.”