CBN, Antigraft Agencies move to enforce sanctions on Commercial Banks in Bauchi.

By Abubakar Baba Ahmad.

The Taskforce Committee setup by the Central Bank of Nigeria CBN in Bauchi says almost all commercial banks in the state are one way or the other flouting its directives on New Naira notes.

Similarly, the committee has forwarded its report on the activities of the commercial Banks in the ongoing new naira notes policy implementation exercise for appropriate action.

The Chairman of the Committee and Director Medical Services of the CBN Dr Abdulkadir Jibril stated this while inspecting Banks compliance on weekend operations, ATMs, and vaults in Bauchi metropolis.

Dr Abdulkadir Jibril who expressed disappointment over the persistent attitude of some commercial Banks to obey the Apex Bank’s directives, said the committee is waiting for signal from its headquarters to commence enforcement of necessary sanctions.

“Citizens are queueing up trying to get access to this cash and they’re just keeping it to themselves and telling people stories, but anyway we’ve escalated to our head office and we are very hopeful that we are going to sort out this problem, but its really disappointing and Yes there are provisions for sanctions and I’m very sure once this type of frustration continues there would definitely be sanctions on the Banks,” He assures.

He said people are already frustrated with the cash crunch in the country, hence the need for the commercial Banks to ensure proper utilisation of the monies allocated for stocking ATMs and disbursing to registered Swap agents to ease the situation.

“You’ve seen people attending parties, very unpatriotically throwing away all these new notes without respecting and protecting the notes. So its not being fair to conclude that they’re only keeping those for Politicians, but its comfortable you can say that they have some favoured customers,” Dr Jibril explains.

Also Speaking, the branch Controller CBN Bauchi Haladu Andaza Idris said the branch has been allocating adequate cash to the commercial Banks, but wondered why many of them are not utilising the cash allocated judiciously.

“We are going round to see that they have complied by putting it in the ATM and paying over the counter, but what we saw today like in First Bank they’re not paying over the counter, we haven’t seen anybody paying any other person. So that is why we are here, we want to make sure that everything has been done,” Andaza laments.

Haladu Andaza further disclosed that the apex Bank will continue to monitor the activities of the commercial Banks to ensure that customers and all citizens are not short-changed or made to suffer while trying to access the physical currency.

On the issue of Banks disbursing money to their branches in other states, the Northeast Zonal Coordinator of the Taskforce Committee Haruna Yole said every state has a CBN branch which takes care of Cash needs of all the Banks and as such, monies meant for every state must be accounted for.

Haruna Yole who is also a Deputy Director from the Financial Policy and Regulations department of the apex Bank noted that the ongoing Cash Swap and other initiatives under the new naira notes policy is going smoothly in all the states of the sub region, though with little hitches that would be summounted in coming days.

The taskforce comprising of anti graft agencies and the Police had in the past few weeks kept close supervision of commercial Banks’ compliance to CBN directives on distribution and utilisation of allocated money.

Similarly, Some Customers have called on the nation’s financial regulator to impose stiffer penalty on commercial Banks found flouting its directives on new naira notes policy.

They made the call while speaking with Radio Nigeria Globe FM at some Bank branches within Bauchi metropolis.

One of them Babale Haruna frowned at how the Banks outrightly disobey CBN’s directive on minimum withdrawal limit, stocking of ATMs with cash and extension of working days to Saturdays and Sundays.

Babale urged the Central Bank to impose heavy fines or other stringent measures on the Banks to overcome the challenges.

Another Customer, Yahaya Shuaibu who said he’s in support of the policy on twenty thousand naira maximum withdrawal limit, called on the financial regulator to prevail on commercial Banks to always stock their ATMs with cash.

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