Polaris Bank Limited announced yesterday that it would close down most of its banking halls across the country starting from today, March 30th, 2020. This is part of its commitment towards preventing further spread of the highly contagious Coronavirus.
According to a statement that was issued via Twitter, the bank noted that its “virtual branches” would remain open to serve customers in the meantime. In other words, customers are advised to make use of the bank’s internet banking facilities, the statement noted.
Polaris Bank is joining a growing list of other banks and numerous other companies that have resorted to limiting physical presence in a bid to contain the virus spread. Some parts of the statement said:
“Given the importance of limiting human-to-human contact in these times, and to further support government efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19, we will be limiting our operations for in-branch transactions to some selected branches nation-wide, effective Monday, 30th March 2020. The selection is carefully designed to ensure fair representation across the country.”
Meanwhile, based on the responses to this announcement, it appears some of the customers are already experiencing some difficulties with Polaris Bank’s online banking features. Some of these customers complained that the bank’s mobile banking app is not functional.
But your mobile app isn't functioning for transfer
— unusual_Tomi (@oluwatomisin0) March 29, 2020
In the meantime, other banks such as Zenith Bank, Access Bank, Guaranty Trust Bank, and First Bank have all closed down most of their branches, as customers were advised to make use of online banking channels. However, while this is a good way to limit further spread of the Coronavirus, customers are worried whether they will be able to receive the best of service during this time.
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@PolarisBankLtd i just got off the phone with your representative and they're telling me it'll take 5 working days to get my money back during this pandemic…how am i supposed to get foodstuff before lock down on Tuesday.. I'm very disappointed in your bank
— Aydeji_j (@j_aydeji) March 29, 2020
Nigeria has so far recorded a total of 111 cases of the Coronavirus, according to official information from the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, NCDC. While this is less than what obtains in other African countries such as Ghana and South Africa, the government and other stakeholders are making a concerted effort to avoid further spread of the virus.
Just yesterday, President Muhammadu Buhari announced a 14-day lockdown of Lagos, Abuja, and Ogun State. As Nairametrics reported, the lockdown will take effect from 11 pm today.