Government of Ogun State has appealed to commercial banks in the State to reopen for business following their total shutdown on Wednesday.
DAILY POST had earlier reported that banks in the Gateway State refused to operate on Wednesday to avoid another attack similar to that of Tuesday, when banks and their facilities were vandalised by angry protesters.
Angry Abeokuta residents rioted on Tuesday to express their displeasure over the lingering scarcity of the new naira notes and petrol.
Our correspondent reports that all banks and ATMs were totally shut down across the State yesterday, making it impossible for residents to access banking services.
Some customers also complained of their inability to make use of their bank apps and USSD to make online transactions.
But, the Ogun State Government has appealed to the bankers to return to work, assuring them of adequate protection.
The government also promised to continue to engage the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and proffer lasting solutions to the issue of cash shortage.
The Commissioner for Finance in Ogun, Dapo Okubadejo, spoke at a meeting on Wednesday with the Bankers Committee in his Oke Mosan, Abeokuta office.
According to Okubadejo, the scarcity of the new naira notes, as well as the refusal of banks to open for business is “hampering economic activities in the State,” stressing that the government is prepared to forestall any further destruction of banking facilities.
While assuring of improved security across all financial outlets, Okubadejo described Tuesday’s destruction of some bank’s ATMs as unfortunate, saying it was as a result of the frustration caused by the unavailability of cash to the citizenry.
He revealed that the State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, had earlier held a meeting with the Controller of the Central Bank of Nigeria in Ogun State, Mr Wahab Oseni.
He charged residents of the State to exercise patience and desist from attacking banks and bankers.
“The Central Bank of Nigeria has indicated that it would give money to the various banks, so as a State, we are using this opportunity to appeal to the Bankers’ Committee to ensure that people have access to their funds, for the smooth running of economic activities across the State,” Okubadejo said.
Reacting, the leader of the Bankers’ Forum, Mr. Adeniran Oladele, revealed that the crisis was caused by misinformation, saying it has led to the banks losing revenue as a result of the closure.
He called for aggressive sensitisation of the masses on the availability of the naira notes, adding that this will help in reducing public unrest.