The House of Representatives has mandated its Committee on Banking and Currency (when constituted)to investigate the issue of excess charges and illegal deductions by commercial banks in Nigeria.
This was sequel to a motion by a member from Cross River state Mr Godwin Offiono, at plenary.
The lawmaker stated that some Banks and Financial Institutions in Nigeria indulge in the unethical practice of fleecing their customers through excess charges and unauthorized deductions.
According to him, customers of different Commercial Banks are groaning over excessive charges on their accounts saying the Financial Institutions known as Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) have reportedly introduced different deductions to increase their income.
Mr Offiono observed that apart from Stamp Duty, bank customers also pay Value Added Tax (VAT) charges applicable on all VATable transactions in their account.
“Also aware that Commercial Banks are charging outrageous interest on loans, and overdraft at a rate that is higher than the agreed rate in the offer letter.
“Further aware of the arbitrary increase in the interest rate on loans and overdrafts and increase in the other fees without notifying and getting customer’s consent as stipulated in the Central Bank /Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) guideline.
He expressed concern that the creation of charges not recognized in the Central Bank Guide to Bank charges is a
common practice by Commercial Banks.
Offiono added that as affected customers attempted to lodge complaints to the Bank’s Customer Care they are treated as beggars without result.
Adopting the motion, the house mandated the committee on Legislative Compliance (when constituted) to ensure implementation.