New Naira notes: Banks close down over customers’ protests in Kogi
Some commercial banks in Kogi closed down on Wednesday when customers staged peaceful protests over their inability to access money for daily use.
Our correspondent reports in Lokoja that customers in their droves picketed the banks to either change the daily narration of “no money” or close down.
Some of the banks affected include GTB, Unity, Zenith, Access and Unity Bank situated along IBB Way, which shut down for the day.
A customer, simply called Ibrahim, told our correspondent that their protest stemmed from the allegations that the banks refused to give or dispense the new redesigned Naira notes to customers in flagrant disobedience to Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN’s) directive.
“We have been scavenging across these banks without success in getting any money that could help us and our families survive this hard times
“You can see how angry most of us are, and it’s just for a singular reason that we can’t access money that we can use to feed our families.
“Today, we have decided that no official of First bank, GTB, Unity, Zenith, Union and Access banks will be allowed to enter his/her offices to work.
“They will only be allowed in if they can assure us of money that could go round today,” the protester said.
Another protester, one Mrs Jummai, said “it serves them (banks) right today, coupled with the punishment they have been giving us over our own money that we kept with them”.
Reacting on condition of anonymity, a bank official with GT Bank, described the situation as “very unfortunate”.
She expressed worry over the wrong notion customers hold against commercial banks in respect to the non-availability of the new Naira notes.
“What our customers don’t know is that the money we get for our daily transactions is not always enough to go round them.
“As it’s now, we have no option than to stay away from office for today since the customers are tensed and have locked us out,” she lamented.
It was reported that the situation is different at Polaris, UBA, Eco and Fidelity banks along the same IBB Way, which were opened to customers for business.
These few banks were said to, some extend, been trying in dispense cash to their customers compared to those picketed.