In the light of some stories that have been circulating in the media over the past few days, the Management of Sterling Bank Plc finds it necessary to make the following clarifications:
(1) The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) visited Sterling Bank Plc on Wednesday 4th May, 2016 requesting to see a mid-level officer of the Bank;
(2) Unfortunately the officer was not immediately available and that led to the agency questioning some senior management staff including the CEO of the Bank;
(3) At the time, the nature of the EFCC investigation was unclear. Nonetheless, the Bank issued a formal notice to the Nigeria Stock Exchange and briefed the relevant regulators on this development;
(4) It has now become clear that the investigation is related to the banking relationship of a non-bank financial institution that is a client of Sterling Bank Plc;
(5) We affirm for the public records that the Bank does not hold the account of the public officer from the previous administration to which this matter has been linked either officially or otherwise;
(6) The non-bank financial institution (Asset Management Company) in question purchased a number of loans on a recourse basis from Sterling Bank Plc on commercially acceptable terms and this is the link of the concern raised by the EFCC to Sterling Bank Plc
(7) Arising from this incident the Bank has commissioned a review of the compliance procedures of its non bank financial institution clients with the aim of strengthening this area of our operations. In the Interim, the Bank will not accept any new non-bank financial institution relationships.
We thank our numerous partners for their support and assure you that the bank remains a compliant institution that continues to conduct its business within the ambit of the law.