1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
It is feared that the inability of management to ensure effective enforcement to rules and regulation have rendered that operation of internal control system s the Banking industry open to abuse. The net effect could be that every one carries out his schedule off duties in any manner he likes which consequently gives those wishing to commit fraud their long expected golden opportunity.
Prior to 1952, there was no form of Banking art or ordinance to regulate the establishment and operations of Commercial Banks or a Central Banks to supervise the control of Banking Nigerian. During that time many Banks was registered some of which never operated and even since that period, fraud has remained a permanent feature in out Banking industry. This resulted in the loss of faith and trust in the financial institutions by Nigeria and consequently, under-development of the banking habit in the country.
However with the introduction of the first banking ordinance in 1952, and the central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Act in 1959 and other subsequent Acts and ordinances with their amendments over the years, used to regulate and control the activities and operations of financial institutions in the country, fraud in financial institution have rather increased in magnitude and the methods used to perpetrate them acquire greater sophistication day after day. Now with the introduction of modern procedures and advancement in information technology such as those in communication system, automatic electric gadgets and computer into the banking system coupled with the various precautionary measures taken by bank agent, fraud have rather taken nuclear dimensions and the size of sums involved increased at a geometric rate and also with the held of Anipkitan (1976) a banker of repute, I Ashimi (1976, p6) a banker of prudent, Ughamadu N. (1991) observed to be liable in its banking sector and be very porous to fraud and many others who have contributed to maintain a prudently measured to the ascertainment of financial banking assets and liabilities.
Consequently, the confirmed existence of financial institutions rests delicately on the maintains of public confidence. This calls for the establishment of an effective system of internal control which among other things will help to ensure that the laid down procedures standard and statuary requirement.
To establish a sound internal control system various organization adopt scope of their operations. Internal control system requires a continues check and rechecking of day-to-day activities of the business in order to ensure the correctness and firmness of the accounting records, and to detect and expose any deviation when it has accord. Most financial institutions loose confidence of the people not only through fraudulent use of funds but also through some detect infraudulent practices and or syndication of some dishonest staff facilitated by defects in the Bank internal control system. There is therefore a great need to climate or minimize the defects loopholes and make money effective and operational to quard against the occurrence and re-occurrence of fraud in our financial institutions.
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
In our daily newspapers thee are reports of fraud in financial institutions. For instance, Business concord (January 27 1990) noted with ulter dismay that “Robbers are making nonsense of the various types of security measures in banks by employing scientific means of gaining access to their strong rooms. Another contribution in the Business Times (23rd January 1990) commented that “the rising incidence of bank fraud has created a lot of distrust between banks and their customers”. Not only that there are increase numbers of reported cases of fraud but also the sums involved are staggering.
The methods used is perpetrating fraud is recent times are acquiring nuclear sophistication day after day. While the bank management are busy devising new methods of checking fraud, the fraudulent staff are busy devising new methods of defrauding the bank. It is obvious here that the results of these incidence are damaging. Fraud leads to unwanted loss of public fund and put the management of the affected bank on its toes.
Every incidence of bank fraud reduces public confidence in banking and consequently slows down development of baking habit In Nigeria.
This continuous occurrence of fraud could be as a result of the present state of the world of technology and the level of sophistication which has enable people to easily discover more ways of perpetrating fraud in the banking system.
In view of this, therefore, there arises a need for measures to be taken to avert this situation otherwise it could lead to the crippling of the economy and failure of the banking in particular. However, despite the steps and measures taken by banks to prevent the occurance of fraud. The situation still remains largely unchanged. It is therefore necessary to appraise and or establish an adequate and effective internal control system in financial institutions for then orderly and efficient operation so as to guard against ever increasing incidence of fraud, hence this study.
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
This research work concentrates essentially on the financial institutions with special a view to providing suitable recommendations and suggestions that will help in their prevention and minimization of fraud. It is therefore the main objective of this study to examine the internal control system in the operation of this bank in Nigeria and evaluate the appropriateness and the effectiveness of the system as a toll for fraud prevention.
This study also has its objectives as follows;
i. To ascertain the degree of compliance of the banks staff with the internal control measures.
ii. To identify possible defect, or loop holes (if any) in the system.
iii. To examine the relevance and appropriative of the presently adopted control measures in preventing frauds.
iv. To offer useful recommendation based on the finding on how best to prevent the occurrences of fraud through an effective internal control system.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTION
1. Does the present internal control system financial Institutions appropriate in present world of technology and sophistication in Financial Institutions?
2. How effective is the Internal control system in Financial Institutions?
3. What techniques, if any could internal control system in Banks can be used to prevent fraud in Financial Institutions?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
This study is required to test, amongst other things the following.
Ho, that the present Internal control system in financial institutions is appropriate in the present world of technology and sophistication in Financial Institutions.
HI: That the present internal controls system in financial Institutions is not appropriate in this present world of technology and sophistication in First Bank Nigeria Plc.
Ho: That the present internal control system in financial institutions is not appropriate in this present world of technology and sophistication of First Bank Nigeria Plc is effective.
HI: That the present internal control system in First Bank Nigeria Plc is not effective.
Ho: That the present internal control system in Financial Institutions can prevent fraud.
HI: That the present internal control system in Financial Institutions cannot prevent fraud.
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