CBN to investigate dearth of money in ATMs

By Tanko Mohammed

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said on Wednesday in Lagos, that it would investigate the scarcity of funds witnessed by customers in most Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in the state.

The CBN‘s Acting Director, Corporate Communications, Mr Osita Nwanisobi, said that ATMs were introduced so as to ease the sufferings of the people.

He spoke on the heels of customers complaint that the proliferation of Agent Banking was the reason ATMs had no money to dispense, which people alleged was due to banks conspiracy with CBN.

He also described as “preposterous” insinuations that the apex bank conspired with commercial banks to ensure there were no money in the machines.

“It is highly preposterous for anyone to say that CBN connived with banks to deprive people of their money this season.

“The primary purpose for which ATMs were introduced was to ease the sufferings of Nigerians and to make banking easier and convenient.

“I assure the public that CBN will investigate the matter,” he said.

Meanwhile, ATMs that are not dispensing cash are those that are either faulty or those looted and vandalised during the #Endsars protests.

The ones that are not faulty, due to network issues are also facing scarcity of funds, thereby, leaving groaning customers to patronise Agent Banking.

According to CBN, Agent banking is “the provision of financial services to customers by a third party (agent) on behalf of a licensed deposit taking financial institution and/or mobile money operator.

A visit to Firstbank ATMs Iganmu, showed the machines in the bank premises were not dispensing, but the ones in the banking hall are working well.

Also at Frstbank ATM in Egbe, Isolo road, the four machines, all in good working conditions, had no cash to dispense.

Customers, who came in to the premises complained that scarcity of funds had always been the order of the day at that particular firstbank quick service point.

Mrs Kudirat Abiodun, a trader, said: “Madam, If you want to withdraw just board a bike to Ikotun branch. I have never seen a branch that is unserious as this one.

“In a week, their machines can only dispense money twice to people. They never have money in their ATMs.

“I think that there is a conspiracy here so that all these POS operators around can make their money,” she alleged.