Customers of different banks in the Federal Capital Territory and environs have lamented the stressful banking operations saying it negated the financial inclusion strategy of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Some customers who spoke to the Our correspondent in Abuja on Tuesday, said bankers were inconsiderate and accused them of capitalising on COVID-19 protocols to cover their inadequacies.
Mr Collins Yastrup, a journalist and an Access Bank Plc customer on the Jikwoyi road, regretted that he stood for more than two hours just to lay a complaint on a failed online transaction.
Yastrup said his account was debited but the recipient had yet to receive the cash.
“If they want to go online with their transactions, they should also perfect it and learn to treat their customers well.
“Without us (the customers), they will not be here. I don’t know why they choose to make us suffer this way.
“You no longer come to the bank and go in freely. You must wait for hours before you are attended to,’’ he explained.
Mrs Onyinye Ibe, a business woman and a customer at Zenith Bank on Check-point junction, Mararaba, described the current situation in banks as pathetic.
“Whenever I have to go to the bank these days, I feel so discouraged because of the stress that one has to pass through before being attended to.
“The number of people struggling to be attended to is mind-blowing. I wonder what the problem is with banks these days.
“The situation is getting worse by the day. Some banks now use the excuse of COVD-19 to cover their short-comings.
“In fact, I am thinking of saving part of my money at home since banking is no longer the best option.
“If I have to go through a lot of stress just to withdraw or transfer money, then I had better do it the piggy bank way,’’ she lamented.
Miss Vera Adoku, a customer at Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB), near the Mararaba Building Material market, appealed to the bank to make alternative arrangements to serve their numerous customers better.
“The worse is that they alternate the branches that operate every week.
“This has caused the high number in customers that converge at a particular branch and this is not funny at all,’’ she said.
Reacting to the weekly branch rotation strategy of GTB, Oyinade Adegite, the Head, Communication and External Affairs, GTB, said the move was a safety measure taken to curb the spread of COVID-19.
“Following COVID pandemic and the safety measures to curb the spread, we implemented a branch rotation programme.
“This means that we open about 60 per cent of branches at every point in time on a weekly basis.
“So, if we have an incident in a branch during the week, we can close it and operate from another one.
“This was implemented to keep our staff and customers safe and not expose our customers unduly to the risk of COVID,’’ she explained.
NAN reports that the situation was not different at Keystone, First City Monument Bank (FCMB), United Bank for Africa (UBA) and First Bank on the Mararaba axis.