Nigeria slap Lenders N2m fine over depositors’ complaints

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Any bank that failed to acknowledge the complaints from depositors, will pay a fine of N2m, guidelines from the Central Bank of Nigeria, stated.

Besides, each week the bank refused to address customer’s complaints within the prescribed timelines, it would also attract a fine of N500,000 per week.

The CBN stated this in its guidelines on consumer protection.

Part of the penalties for violation of the guidelines by institutions as stipulated by the CBN said, “Non-resolution of complaints within prescribed timelines attracts a penalty of N500,000 per complaint per week while the infraction subsists.

“Non-acknowledgment of complaints from customer or non-issuance of tracking numbers attracts N2m per complaint.

“Non-response to request or failure to comply with CBN directive attracts a penalty of N2m.”

Again, the CBN stated further that false or non-rendition of returns/reports, would attract N100,000 fine, in addition, N10,000 for each day the infraction continued.

“Failure to comply with other provisions of the Regulations not specified above shall attract sanctions provided in the CBN Act, the BOFIA, other enabling laws and regulations,” it stated.

On dispute resolution, the CBN said a complaint would only be escalated to the CBN if the complainant had exhausted the Institution’s Internal Dispute Resolution process.

It could also be escalated if an institution failed to acknowledge the complaint within three days.

The CBN added that it could be escalated if, “Within 90 days from the date of the receipt of a decision from an institution; If it is not undergoing the process of resolution or already considered and resolved by a recognised Alternative Dispute Resolution channel.

“If it is not under litigation or already adjudicated upon by a court of law, except where the aspect before the court is distinct from the matter brought to the CBN or where the court is dealing with the criminal aspect of the matter.”

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