Beneficiaries protest as banks commence COVID-19 loan recovery

Beneficiaries protest as banks commence COVID-19 loan recovery

Punch reports that commercial banks have begun to take back a significant amount of loans that were given to Nigerians in an effort to lessen the financial burden of the COVID-19 outbreak. As a result, several beneficiaries have had unauthorized withdrawals from their bank accounts. CONTINUE FULL READING>>>>>

The loans were given to households and micro, small, and medium-sized businesses (MSMEs) impacted by the epidemic in 2021 by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The fund, which is run by NIRSAL Microfinance Bank and charges a 5% interest rate with a moratorium until February 28, 2021, attracted hundreds of applications.

Despite guidelines from the CBN specifying eligible beneficiaries, individuals who spoke to the media expressed surprise at the deductions. A beneficiary, Aunty Yinka, reported that a commercial bank removed N750,000 from her and her son’s accounts, leaving her financially strained.

Another recipient, Mr. Success, received a COVID-19 grant but was perplexed when his account was debited by N305,754, labeled as GSI recovery. He insisted that the grant was not meant to be repaid.

NIRSAL spokesperson Halimat Lawal couldn’t be reached for comment, but a director confirmed the loan recovery initiative, clarifying that the disbursement was a loan and not a grant.

The bank’s website indicates plans to recover loans from businesses and households, with beneficiaries admitting to receiving loans without proper documentation and being charged additional fees before disbursement.

Some recipients, like Onuche Isaiah, paid sums to agents for loan disbursement, while Adama highlighted the need for connections to benefit from government incentives. Despite these challenges, the NIRSAL Microfinance Bank is actively pursuing loan recovery campaigns for defaulting customers. CONTINUE FULL READING>>>>>

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