N125m in Fines Imposed on Banks and 18 Other Entities for Delayed Filings

A recent investigation by The PUNCH has revealed that a total of eight banks and 18 other publicly traded companies have been fined a collective amount of N125 million due to their failure to meet the mandatory requirement set forth by the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) for the submission of audited financial statements for the year 2022 and quarterly reports for the first half of 2023.

Among the banks that faced penalties were Unity Bank, FBN Holdings, Access Holdings, Fidelity Bank, Jaiz Bank, Wema Bank, Guaranty Trust Holdings Plc, and Ecobank Transnational Incorporated.

Similarly, companies such as John Holt, PZ Cussons, Notore Chemical, Glaxo SmithKline Consumer Nigeria, Industrial Medical and Gases Nigeria, and Juli Plc were also subjected to these sanctions.

NGX’s post-listing regulations stipulate that publicly listed companies are required to submit their audited financial results within 90 calendar days, or three months, following the end of the respective period. Additionally, these rules necessitate the submission of interim reports within 30 calendar days following the conclusion of the relevant period.

The latest X-Compliance Report issued by NGX’s regulatory division indicated that FBN Holdings was fined for the delay in submitting both its 2022 financial results and its Q1 2023 report. The bank was penalized N6.3 million for the former and N3.3 million for the latter.

Unity Bank paid fines of N6.4 million for the tardy submission of its 2022 results and an additional N3.4 million for the delay in providing its Q1 2023 interim reports.

Other penalties included N2.7 million paid by Fidelity Bank, N1.4 million by GTCO, and N1.9 million by Wema Bank.

Access Holdings faced a fine of N2 million, while Jaiz Bank, Ecobank, and John Holt were fined N600,000, N3.2 million, and N3.2 million, respectively.

PZ Cussons received a fine of N4.8 million, Notore Chemical was penalized with N500,000, and GSK, which had previously announced its withdrawal from the Nigerian market, incurred a fine of N1.3 million for its failure to meet the deadline for filing its 2022 financial results.

Numerous other companies were also reprimanded for delays in submitting their 2022 audited accounts, with penalties ranging from N120,000 to N4.9 million.

David Adonri, Vice-chairman of Highcap Securities, emphasized the significance of these fines in upholding the integrity of the market, particularly as they pertain to the timely disclosure of corporate information. Adonri also noted that companies facing challenges in meeting these deadlines have the option to formally request additional time from the exchange.

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