Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, has expressed concern over the way banks charge customers indiscriminately during transactions, saying that apart from charges known to the customers, there appeared to be other ‘hidden’ charges that the banks imposed on their customers.
The Speaker while speaking when he hosted the board and management of the Standard Chartered Bank, led by the Chief Executive Officer, Mr Lamin Manjang, said the House was concerned that such a practice was making customers helpless, hence Nigerian banks should come up with ways to address high charges on loans and other facilities they offered.
He said: ”We have issues that come up in your industry, so this visit is a welcome development. One of the issues at stake is the rate at which banks charge customers. There are claims that banks have hidden charges. This has come up a couple of times on the floor of the House. This is something that we should look into.”
Gbajabiamila also voiced concern over the kind of exploitative marketing some banks’ marketers are subjected to and demanded to know if that was the practice all over the world.
He noted that if it’s not international best practice, then why should it obtain here.
He recalled that some years back, he came up with a bill against corporate prostitution, but that it did not sail through.
He said: ”You have corporations in the UK and other parts of the world. What obtains here in terms of banking, in terms of marketing, sending people to go and knock at people’s offices and all that does it obtain in those places?. We’re here to support you. Whatever we need to do, we should do it to support you. We need to know the kind of marketing that takes place. Is it digital marketing? We also have to set realistic targets for the marketers. We have the responsibility to protect Nigerians, and we also have the responsibility not to kill your business. So, it’s a delicate situation.”