The Central Bank of Nigeria has said that it received no fewer than 35,453 complaints from bank customers relating to failed transactions in the last 10 years.
The apex bank said within the period, the sums of N115.45bn and over $22.7m were refunded to customers as a result of the failed transactions.
This was disclosed by an official of the Consumer Protection Department of the CBN, Elachi Samuel, in a presentation during a one-day sensitisation fair for stakeholders in Bauchi State on Thursday.
The fair had the theme, ‘Promoting alternative payment channels as tools for financial inclusion’.
Samuel said out of the complaints lodged by customers, 33,437 were resolved.
He stated, “The CBN, in trying to engender confidence in the financial system, always brings out policies and activities to protect consumers. This is to ensure that they do not lose their money while conducting financial transactions.
“Since the establishment of the Consumer Protection Department of the Central Bank of Nigeria in 2013 till May 2023, we received a total of 35,453 complaints relating to failed bank transactions. Out of these complaints, we resolved 33,437.
“During this period, the sum of N115.45bn was refunded to customers. The sum of $22,794,184.87 was also refunded to customers.”
He urged customers to first report their disputes to the financial institutions for quick and amicable resolution before approaching the apex bank with further complaints if they were not satisfied with the actions of the institutions.
Speaking earlier in his opening remarks, the Director, Corporate Communications Department, CBN, Isa Abdulmumin, said the fair was designed as a platform to interact with members of the public on the policies and strategic interventions of the apex bank for sustainable economic development in the country.
According to him, as a responsible and responsive corporate citizen, the CBN has demonstrated the most passionate commitment to supporting businesses and promoting diversification through an array of interventions in agriculture, health, manufacturing and other key sectors of the economy.
Abdulmumin, who was represented by the Assistant Director in the department, Esu Imo, said the presentations to be made included those on how the bank had protected the rights of financial services consumers through the Consumer Protection Department, from the Currency Operations Department on how best to keep the naira clean and the efforts of the CBN to make currency available to the populace.
Other presentations, according to him, are recent innovations in the Nigerian payment system by the Payment System Management Department and recent developments in foreign exchange by the Financial Market Department.
The director stated, “Therefore, the objectives of this engagement are among others, to sensitise members of the public to how the bank’s interventions can grow their businesses and contribute to the Nigerian economy.
“The CBN will sustain its efforts towards ensuring the availability of currency. We, however, urge you to see the naira as our critical symbol of national identity. Respect and keep it clean. Do not spray, hawk, mutilate, or counterfeit the naira.
“In conclusion, let me assure you that the CBN will continue to ensure that the bank delivers on its core mandate of ensuring monetary and price stability. However, it is instructive to state that the bank shall also continually roll out proactive and innovative policies, which will ensure that all economic sub-sectors receive the desired support.”