Following the directive by the House of Assembly that banks should suspend charges on card maintenance bank customers have lauded the move, saying it would curb some of the excess charges of the banks.
The Senate on Wednesday had directed the Central Bank of Nigeria and banks to suspend the card maintenance charges and also increase the amount that can be withdrawn at once from ATMS to N40,000 from the current N20,000.
Bank customers have consistently complained of the excessive charges by banks and the tactic used to ensure that customers pay the N65 charge for on ATM usage. Although the maximum amount that can be withdrawn at once from ATMS is N20,000 most ATMS across the country have a maximum limit of N10,000.
Customers argue that the tactic used by banks is to ensure that ATM withdrawals exceed the three times monthly limit after which N65 is charged on every withdrawal.
Some bank customers who spoke with Leadership said the move is commendable. A customer who identified himself as Chinedu said “we have been saying this thing but the banks just keep charging us. I have three ATMS and the banks charge me maintenance charges for all of them and I don’t even use one of them. I keep asking what are they maintaining. I just hope that the Senate will make sure that they stop these charges.”
Another customer, Mr Yusuf noted that it was high time the issue of excessive bank charges was taken up by the lawmakers. According to him, some of these banks have made it an habit to make money from poor Nigerians with the charges.
“Imagine a bank that was charging me two maintenance charges on one account. All these things has to stop. So I hope the Senate does something about this” Yusuf stated.
President of Bank Customers Association of Nigeria (BCAN), Dr Uju Ogubunka while commending the directive of the senate noted that it was “coming a little too late.
“This is something they would have done a long time ago because bank customers have been complaining about these charges for years, but e thank God that they have woken up to their responsibilities.”
The CBN recently said it had been able to recover and return over N65 billion excess charges between 2012 and 2018 with some customers getting up to N3 billion during the period.
The CBN through its Consumer Protection Department had maintained that said any bank that deducts monies illegally from a customer’s account for products and services would be forced to refund the money to the customer with interest.