Naira crisis: Banks lose N5bn to attacks on facilities

...ASSBIFI puts workers on alert to shut banks

Bank workers have estimated losses to the attacks on their facilities in different parts of the country at N5 billion.

The estimates come as the workers on Thursday threatened to withdraw their services and shut down the banking system if the attacks were not immediately halted by the government and the police authorities.

Oluwole Olusoji, president, Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions (ASSBIFI), who gave the estimates at a news conference in Lagos, aside bank buildings burnt and Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) destroyed, staffers have also suffered personal losses.

“Notwithstanding the insecurity due to the destruction of business premises within the banking industry, and the impact on insurance organisations, we remain committed to go the extra mile in providing service to our customers in safe and secure environments.

“However, we value the lives of our members and colleagues and will not put them at any further risk. We have, therefore, put them on alert and shall instruct them without further warning to immediately stay away from their branches if these attacks on our members and facilities continue until such a time that they can be guaranteed of their personal safety and the security of their workplaces by the relevant authorities.

“We call on the public to desist from threatening or attacking our members, or destroying our properties as they will be only proverbially cutting their noses to
spite their faces. We can only give what we have been provided with and nothing
more,” Olusoji said.

He put the number of bank branches so far attacked across the country at 17, just as he called on Goodwin Emefiele, the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to intervene and safe the banks from the barrage of criticisms by making more of the redesigned naira notes available to the banks.