This study intends to achieve two objectives. First, the thesis seeks to thoroughly investigate the role of the Central Bank of Nigeria in ensuring that banks comply with the code of corporate governance (CG) and secondly to examine the level of compliance with the law of corporate governance by Nigeria banks pre 2009 and post 2009.
Various activities such as insider abuse, poor governance practices, erosion of depositors’ funds and poor compliance culture which are considered inimical to the sustainable banks in Nigeria, necessitate a research study of this nature. This study will help unravel the challenges affecting compliance in the Nigeria banking sector, based on the perceptions gotten from the respondents.
Three theories were considered suitable for this research, one the agency theory because of its dominant position in corporate governance. The second theory used for this work was the stakeholder theory. This theory was considered appropriate due to the governance issues affecting banks and number of stakeholders involved in banks compared to non-financial firms and finally institutional isomorphism theory, because of the institutional factors prevalent in a developing nation like Nigeria.
Employing an interpretivism research philosophy, the research study adopts a qualitative research strategy. Data was collected using semi-structured, face-to-face/telephone interviews from three groups of stakeholders (regulators, bank employees and bank depositors). To aid data triangulation and improve the credibility and trustworthiness of the data collected, other sources of data, such as focus group and document review, were also collected. Data were analysed using thematic analysis.
In highlighting the barriers to compliance of corporate governance codes in the banks under the purview of the Central Bank of Nigeria, this study revealed that factors such as regulatory forbearance and regulatory capture are still affecting the effectiveness of the CBN in ensuring the banks are fully compliant to the CG codes.
Also, due to the institutional factors such as judiciary system, legal system and lack of political will, the CBN is constrained from using its powers, to effect a change of the culture of compliance in the Nigeria deposit banks. Finally, the recommendations of this study provide insight into how the Central Bank of Nigeria can ensure Nigerian banks are sustainable, through the best practice of corporate governance.