Naira Redesign: First Bank threatens to shut down branches


Nigeria’s oldest bank, First Bank of Nigeria Plc has threatened to shut down its branches if attacks on bank facilities persist.

The bank notified customers that the current attacks on banks will force it to open where it is safe to do so.

Banks have been under pressure since the Central Bank of Nigeria began the move to withdraw the N1,000, N500 and N200 from circulation.

The apex bank has withdrawn N1.9trn from circulation and printed only N300bn, complicating liquidity issues across the country.

Cash scarcity has hit most banks as customers spend time on ATMs without being able to withdraw their money.

In Edo, Lagos and Abeokuta, bank facilities have been vandalised by angry customers who are unable to get their cash.

First Bank said, “We know these are challenging times and our commitment to support does not waver. We will keep our doors open and have greatly increased capacity across all our electronic platforms.

“However, should we observe skirmishes around certain locations, we may have to temporarily shut our doors as we also take the safety and welfare of our staff seriously.

“We believe that we are in this together and here to find and provide solutions. Unfortunately, those attacking bank branches only make it more difficult for us to do our part in resolving the challenge we collectively face.”

Zenith Bank Plc posted a similar notice about the closure of selected branches over the safety of members of staff.