A leading commercial bank, Guarranty Trust Bank (GTBank) said on Thursday that normal activities continues at its various branches in contrary to claim that most customers have closed their accounts after the arrest of businessman Innocent Chukwuma.
Mr. Chukwuma, the CEO of Innoson Motors was arrested but later released and the matter has been rumoured to have connection with his pending case in court with GTBank.
Commenting on Facebook, GTBank said: “The attention of Guaranty Trust Bank plc has been drawn to publications in the news and social media which purports that customers of the Bank are closing their accounts with the Bank, and urging the Bank’s esteemed customers to withdraw their money from the Bank as a result of this.
“These statements are completely false, baseless and malicious.”
GTBank however said it will not issue any other comment on the matter, since it is under investigation by appropriate authorities.
The Innoson boss had engaged that bank in a prolonged legal battle after he accused the it of indiscrete deductions in his bank account.
The social media had also been flushed with reports that over 2.7 million accounts have been closed with more than N18 billion in them within the space of two days drama of Chukwuma’s arrest.
This came after Mr Chukwuma’s arrest on Tuesday, as some people, mostly from the South-East geopolitical zone, called on customers of GTbank to withdraw their money and close their accounts at the bank.
EFCC had also alleged that the arrest was occasioned by the Innoson boss refusal to heed the invitation to come over to the agency, which he denied.
Reacting to the allegation, Cornel Osigwe, Innoson’s spokesperson said his boss boss was never invited by EFCC before his arrest, daring the anti-graft agency to prove it to Nigerians.
Mr. Osigwe therefore faulted GTBank for being behind the his boss ordeal, a report which the bank denied on Tuesday after Chukwuma’s arrest.
Reacting to the alleged indiscrete deductions in his bank account, the GTBank in an interview with Premium Times, said that Mr. Chukwuma falsified bank and shipping documents.
In its notice to the stock exchange, signed by the company secretary, Erhi Obebeduo, the bank urged Nigerians to ignore all sorts of innuendoes being purportedly spread across the social media against the bank.
“The bank would however not be detered from pursuing appropriate actions either in respect of its delinquent loans or reporting any untoward/criminal activity for investigations by the appropriate authorities.
“The Bank as a custodian of depositors’ funds views it’s obligation to depositors with a high sense of responsibility and would jealously protect such funds and take appropriate steps to recover debts from any recalcitrant debtor.”