The National Pension Commission (PenCom) has confirmed that any funds that have been invested in First Bank Holdings Ltd (FBNH) by Leadway Pensure Ltd belong to holders of Retirement Savings Accounts (RSA).
This has apparently silenced any claims that Tunde Hassan-Odukale and some entities related to him own a 5.36% stake in First Bank, which would have made Hassan-Odukale the single, largest shareholder in the company.
It seemed to be competitive, as after popular billionaire business Femi Otedola acquired a 5.07% stake in the bank, company secretary Seye Kosoko wrote to the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), signing off Leadway Pensure PFA’s (Pension Fund Administrator) whole 2.11% stake to Tunde Hassan-Odukale.
After this, Kosoko was also responsible for listing 1.36% of the investment stated as “ZPC/Leadway Assurance Prem & Inv Coll Acct” in the favour of Hassan-Odukale.
The clarification from PenCom confirmed that the shareholding which has been ascribed to Hassan-Odukale will most likely be reduced to not up to 4%, with Leadway Pensure’s stake in the bank being classified.
PenCom issued a statement on Friday which stated that it did not break any laws by investing in First Bank, contrary to reports circulating the media.
The Pension Commission however said that any equity investments made by Leadway Pensure in FBN Holdings on behalf of the pension funds which it manages are in the name of the pension fund and belong to the RSA. It went further to state that the investments cannot be considered shareholdings of any party related to the PFA.
The Commission’s statement attributed the media reports to the lack of knowledge of the Investment Regulation which was issued by the Commission.
The Commission made reference to records held by the Securities and Exchange Commission, which confirm that the equity investments in FBN Holdings are made in the name of the Pension Fund for RSA holders.