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Anguish as banks remain shut in Edo community




WITH just a day to Christmas, the people of Igarra, headquarters of Akoko-Edo Local Council are in anguish over the non-opening of the only two banks operating in the community – Unity Bank and Keystone Bank – following recent robbery attacks that left a couple of persons dead.

People now travel for not less than 30 minutes to the nearest location, Auchi in Etsako West Local Council to make financial transactions, thus exposing them to danger and the reported frequent robberies along the Igarra-Auchi Road.

They have, therefore, appealed to the financial institutions to re-open for business even as the locals called on the police to increase patrol along the road and also provide extra security for the banks once they resume.

Contacted on phone yesterday, President, Edo North branch of Bankers Association, Bash Sanusi, said the security of the banks was as important as their services.

“The people are scared because of the robbery incidents where lives were lost. They need to beef up security, human life is very important to us. Both those of staff and of customers.”

But a statement by a group, Proudly Igarra, lamented the pains travellers were passing through this Yuletide season.

The release, signed by Mark Shanu and Anthony Ozaveshe and made available to reporters in Benin City yesterday read: “We want the banks to re-open because our people are passing through hell going all the way to Auchi and some even to Okenne in Kogi State just to do bank transaction and this has put them at great risk of being robbed by robbers who are aware of the pains they are passing through.

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