How banks shut doors on customers for shunning social distancing

By Tina George, Minna

The massive crowd that greeted banks in Minna during the window period Tuesday led to some them closing up without attending to customers due to their refusal to obey the social distancing rules. 

Some the banks attended to a limited number customers before they closed for the day at 2 pm. 

The bank customers had besieged the banks as early as 7 am in their numbers waiting for the banks to open. 

The banks with number customers include GTBank, Access Banks, First Bank and Zenith Bank. 

of the people who were waiting for the banks to open were not putting on face masks while social distancing was totally ignored as the customers pushed against themselves to get the attention of security personnel to press home their demands. 

At GTBank in Tunga, the doors leading to the banking hall were shut with people crowding the doors shouting to the bankers to open it. 

There were  security men giving out deposit forms to some of the customers who were ready to trust them with their monies. 

These security men take the money into the banking hall and returned after a while to give the customers the evidence of deposit but the forms were not much, so it could not more people .

“Is this what they will do to us? I have my brother who needs money urgently. This is not fair, the ATM is filled and they are not opening the bank. What do they want us to do? How do they want is to address our financial challenges”, a lady called Amina said. 

For Access Bank, only two out of its three branches were opened in Minna and the crowd in the two tranches were overwhelming. 

A visit to the Tunga branch showed the customers crowding  the doors waiting for it to open while at the other branch, people were not allowed to cross the gate unless they were allowed in by the security. 

Most of the customers outside the gate challenged the security for giving numbers to those they know as some claimed they have been there for hours and have not been allowed in. 

At the main branch of , it was the case of calling a staff inside the bank to assist the customers. 

Inside the bank premises, people were sitting waiting for their turns into the banking hall while outside the gate, those not allowed in sat on the floor as the security continue to reassure them that they will enter into the bank. 

Frustrated customers had to leave the banks as most of them expressed disappointment over not being able to carry out their transaction in the bank. 

ATMs were also overcrowed as throngs of people waited to cash money and make some cashless transactions. 

When contacted, the Public Relations , ASP Abiodun Wasiu, lauded the banks for adhering to the guidelines given to them while urged the people to adhere to the social distancing saying it is for their own good.