The Federal Capital Territory Administration FCTA has threatened to seal some branches of Guaranty Trust Bank in the territory for operating without regards to Covid-19 safety protocols. Consequently, the FCT Administration has issued a 24-hour ultimatum to three branches of the bank in Area 3, Area 11 and the Central Business District CBD in Abuja. The branches have been mandated to put in place relevant customer safety measures or risk severe sanctions.
Chairman of the FCT Ministerial Enforcement Taskteam on COVID-19 Restrictions, Ikharo Attah handed down the warning during a routine monitoring exercise on Tuesday in Abuja.
Attah lamented that the bank’s customers were being exposed to danger due to the violation of physical distancing rule occasioned by the non provision of canopies and chairs by the bank. He also frowned at the absence of hand washing facilities at entry points. According to him, “This particular bank (GTB) is not observing Covid-19 safety protocol at all. There is only one thermometer for this large crowd.
“I have been to this particular branch for more than four times and this bank enjoys large crowd and we are happy for them. However, they are not organising canopies and chairs for their customers to sit and wait. There is no social distancing and some of the people here are not even wearing face masks. The bank should provide canopies, chairs, and hand washing points. We are giving them 24 hours to get all these things in place or risk been sealed. These things will not cost up to N100, 000. They should take the lives of their customers very seriously. Their customers should be treated with utmost dignity. We give them 24 hours to do the needful”. Several of the customers who were agitated complained about being on the queue for about four hours, alleging that some customers were smuggled in while others were kept in the sun. They advised the bank to open up more branches to reduce overcrowding.