Christmas is less than 24-hours and bank customers in Nigeria have stormed various banks in the country to withdraw money in preparations for the celebrations.
Our reporter, who went around some banks in Lagos, south-west Nigeria observed that customers had already arrived their banks as early as 6.am to either use the ATM machines or wait for 8.am for the banks to officially open for business.
However, in most banks the ATM machines failed to function, forcing some customers to rain abuses on the banks, wait patiently in long queue or move to another bank to use the machine
James Bala, a customer with Ecobank was however disappointed when on arrival at the Iyana- Ipaja branch in Lagos at 8.14a.m discovered that the bank did not officially open for the business of the day.
While Bala was furious, Mohammed Sanusi, a customer with Access Bank almost went gaga, when on arrival at his branch with his ATM card also discovered that he could not withdraw money.
However, Sunday Ekpeyong, a manager with First Bank told our correspondent that generally the network was bad in the early hours of Monday, which discouraged most banks from loading money on their ATM machines.
He further explained that considering the celebrations, it is likely that virtually all the banks in Nigeria will experienced large turnout of customers who are withdrawing than those saving.
You see, Nigeria is basically a consuming nation and lots of Nigerians love to use festivity periods like Christmas and New Year to the wine, dine and be happy with their loved ones.
The banker however advised people to spend in moderations, so that they will not be dead broke by the first week of January.
Contacts made with Abuja, Port Harcourt, Kano, Kogi and other states in the country show that the story is the same as bank there are more customers withdrawing than saving during this festive periods.