HomeBUSINESSBanks Report a 117% Rise In Client Complaints

Banks Report a 117% Rise In Client Complaints

It was revealed that customer complaints to five major banks in Nigeria have risen by an alarming 117% year-on-year, reaching  6,865,217 by June 2023, compared to 3,156,704 in the same period last year. 

The financial implications of these complaints are equally eye-popping, with total claims rising to N326.11 billion, marking a massive 289% increase from the N83.78 billion recorded in June 2022.

The banks under inquiry, including United Bank for Africa, Fidelity Bank, Access Holdings, Zenith Bank Plc, and Guaranty Trust Holding Company, have been wrestling with an outstanding inflow of complaints. United Bank for Africa (UBA) stands out with a remarkable 306.32% increase in complaints, soaring to 1,930,518, and a disputed amount of N125.26 billion.

Access Holdings follows closely with a 132.25% rise in complaints, reaching 3,222,907, and a disputed amount of N136.75 billion. Fidelity Bank witnessed a 77.69% increase in complaints, totaling 1,010,586, with N55.20 billion in claims – a significant 268% increment.

In contrast, Zenith Bank Plc experienced a milder 12.55% increase in complaints, reaching 247,685, with a disputed amount of N8.38 billion, a 66% increase from the previous year.

Interestingly, Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTCO) was the only bank to witness a decline in complaints, signaling a 10% improvement, with the disputed amount dropping to N517.67 million from N1.51 billion.

The rise in customer dissatisfaction is multifaceted. The Nigerian banking sector has caught up with the consequences of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Naira Redesign policy, leading to a spike in electronic transactions amid a cash crunch. Electronic payment transactions skyrocketed by 298% year-on-year, in the first quarter of 2023, it is N135.52 trillion. 

Chizor Malize, Managing Director of the Financial Institutions Training Centre, attributes the decline in service quality to the ‘Japa’ trend, where skilled Nigerians are leaving the country for better opportunities.

Dr. Uju Ogubunka, President of Bank Customers Association of Nigeria emphasizes the knowledge gap in the sector, emphasizing the need for better-trained staff.

Customers have also found themselves caught off guard by sudden changes in bank policies, such as account closures without notice and account dormancy issues, worsening the flood of complaints. With the increasing complexity of banking and the evolving landscape, training and education for banking personnel have never been more crucial.

In the face of this rise in customer dissatisfaction, the Nigerian banking sector faces a pressing challenge to enhance customer service, provide proper training, and adapt to the changing financial landscape. The need for a skilled and knowledgeable workforce is paramount to bridging the gap between banks and their customers, ensuring a smoother and more satisfying banking experience.

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