The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) says  building strong depositors’ confidence in banks and other financial institutions will ensure continuous safety and soundness in the financial system.

Mr. Bello Hassan, Managing Director, NDIC, said this while delivering his welcome address during the 2024 Sensitisation Seminar for Justices of the Court of Appeal in Lagos.

The one-day workshop, organised by NDIC in collaboration with the National Judicial Institute (NJI) had the theme: “Building Strong Depositor Confidence in Banks and Other Financial Institutions through Adjudication of Disputes.”

Hassan said the programme was to help the judiciary understand deposit insurance principles toward ensuring a safe and sound financial system in the nation to boost investors’ confidence.

He said the banks were regulated and supervised to guarantee the safety of depositors’ funds, adding that, apart from surveillance, depositors were further protected with a deposit guarantee scheme.

He listed the mandates of the NDIC and its policy objectives towards enhancing confidence in the financial system to contribute to financial system stability.

Hassan expressed hope that the seminar would further ease the speedy dispensation of justice, adding that, the effectiveness of the Deposit Insurance System (DIS) required a deep understanding of the corporation’s unique roles.

He thanked President Tinubu and all the Justices of the Court of Appeal for attending the event to demonstrate their willingness towards providing safe and sound banking in the nation.

He said the annual workshop was yielding desired results while listing success stories to include progress in the liquidation of banks and a better understanding of the roles of corporations.

He said the seminar was a platform for senior members of the bar to brainstorm on the salient provisions of the Failed Banks Act 1994 as a major tool for recovery of debts owed failed banks.

He added that NDIC’s commitment towards boosting depositors’ confidence was shown through the upward review of the maximum deposit insurance coverage levels, as approved by the Corporation’s Interim Management Committee (IMC), in April 2024.

“The deposit insurance coverage has been raised from N500,000 to N5 million for DMBs and Subscribers of Mobile Money Operators (MMOs).

“Accordingly, the coverage for Payment Service Banks (PSBs) and Primary Mortgage Banks (PMBs) has been reviewed from N500,000 to N2 million while that of Microfinance Banks (MFBs), has been increased from N200,000 to N2 million,” he said.

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He appealed for continuous support of the judiciary while urging the appellate court to consider having Practice Direction for the Court of Appeal on failed banks matters.

“This we believe, will provide for quick and effective dispensation of

appeal matters relating to recovery of debts owed failed banks, as well as, prosecution of parties at fault that might have contributed to the failure of their banks,” he said.

President, Court of Appeal, Justice Monica Dongbab-Mensem represented by Presiding Justice, Court of Appeal, Lagos, Justice Jimi Bada while declaring the seminar opened urged participants to use the lessons to better the Nigerian system.

“The seminar is important to the judiciary and our society at large because in a society like ours, there must be confidence in commercial matters.

“And if we narrow that down to banks, when banks are sick or failing, it is a problem and when there is a problem, everybody runs to the judiciary.

“And the judiciary will have to set things right and draw a straight line so that in future, a problem that caused the sickness will not reoccur again.

“The judiciary in this case is like a medical doctor who will treat whatever is the problem,” she said.

She added that the synergy was to ensure investors’ confidence in the nation’s banking system and commercial matters, adding that, the judiciary had an arm for fast-tracking of commercial matters, important to Nigeria.

“We treat them with dispatch in the judiciary.”

Earlier, while delivering his speech, Justice Salisu Abdullahi, Administrator, National Judicial Institute said “economy is about everything in the nation” hence, the commitment to speedy dispensation of justice in commercial matters.

Abdullahi who was represented by the Secretary, National Judicial Institute, Olumo Abdulazeez said that the judiciary and NDIC were indispensable partners in tackling issues towards building depositors’ confidence.

He expressed hope that the seminar will enlighten participants while assuring timely adjudication of commercial matters with “dispatch” while commending NDIC for sustaining the annual seminar.