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Why we shun our traditional commercial banks for digital banks — Nigerian Artisans

Some low income earners particularly artisans on Sunday in Abuja said the difficulties encountered with traditional banks forced them to resort to digital banks.

The artisans said that the advent of digital banks was a blessing.

They further said the difficulty in accessing traditional banking services during the Naira scarcity was the last straw that broke the camel’s back.

According to them, while it was difficult making transfers with traditional bank applications, it was easy with the digital banks.

Mr Ayuba Abubukar, a motocycle rider in Nyanya, a surbub of the FCT, said he recently opened an account with one of the approved digital banks.

He said he was prompted to do so because he lost a lot of customers during the Naira scarcity.

On why he chose a digital bank above traditional bank, Abubakar said the testimonies of ease of banking led him to doing so.

“It took me a few minutes to open an account with a digital bank and transfers have also been easy as well,” he said.

Mrs Ojone Idoko, a petty trader, who deals in palm oil, said she also recently opened an account with a digital bank.

She said what gave her the confidence was how effective their services were during the Naira scarcity.

“I realised that I do not have problem with any transaction carried out using digital banking agents unlike traditional bank applications.

“All the transactions carried out using the Point of Sale(PoS) of some of the digital banks were almost 80 per cent successful.

“So, when I was approached to open an account with them I did not hesitate,” she said.

Mr Anthony Ugwu, who deals in second hand clothes, said although he had an account with a traditional bank, he opened one with a digital bank for ease of transaction.

Ugwu said, “as a businessman, what I want is result.

“So, I opened an account with a digital bank so that if transaction on the traditional bank application declines I can use it.”

Meanwhile, an economic expert, Mr Gabriel Okeowo, said if the traditional banks do not upgrade their systems, they might lose a chunk of customers.

Okeowo, Country Director, BudgiT Foundation Nigeria, an NGO, said the digital banks were posing a great challenge to traditional banks.

He said: “the approval of digital banks by the Central Bank of Nigeria(CBN) is the good thing that has happened to the masses.

“In the last three months virtually every transaction in hotels, markets and restaurants are carried out using digital banks and they seem to be working well.

“Something as simple as getting a PoS machine from a traditional bank is an uphill task and when you eventually get one the network is poor.”

Okeowo further said, “it is obvious there is something the digital banking agents have been able to crack that commercial banks have not been able to.

“For instance error on their transactions are minimised compared to commercial banks.”

The country director said the rush by low income earners for digital banks was as a result of dificulties experienced with commercial banks.

He, however, said government ought to strengthen regulation of the digital banks to secure money deposited in them.

The CBN recently licensed some digital banks to operate as microfinance banks

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