Banks to refund N17bn illegal charges to customers

THE PUNCH Newspaper

The Central Bank of Nigeria has ordered banks to refund over N17bn illegally charged customers as of August 2014.

The Head, Consumer Protection Department, CBN, Hajia Khadijah Kassim, said this in Calabar, Cross River State on Monday. He said the decision was in response to about 5,500 complaints received from bank customers.

Kassim said, “Once we receive a complaint; if it is a case of fraud, we move in immediately. As of August 2014; from 5,500 complaints, we have got the banks to refund over N17bn to customers.

“We are not allowing the banks to have a field day as far as treating customers fairly is concerned.”

Responding to a question on bank frauds at a press briefing to mark the commencement of the Financial Literacy and Consumer Awareness Campaign in Calabar, Kassim said as soon as the central bank received complaints of fraud, it usually wasted no time in addressing them.

“We ensure that banks treat their customers fairly,” she said.

According to her, customers have a right to complain, and advised that they always pay attention to their bank statements.

Kassim urged the customers to question any debit to their account they did not understand and report to the concerned banks.

She said the banks had a 30-day period to resolve such issues or else they would be referred to the CBN, which would ensure that the issues were resolved fairly to the customers.

Kassim, who represented the Director, CPD, Mr. U. A. Dutse, said the CBN was putting structures in place to ensure that consumers got maximum benefits from financial services provisioning in order to enable them take charge of their financial wellbeing and enhance economic development.

She said the purpose of the week-long programme was to interact and to sensitise the state’s residents on financial literacy and consumer protection issues.


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