How Polaris Bank duped me of my life savings, aggrieved customer cries out

Polaris Bank, once rescued from the ashes of Skye Bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on September 21, 2018 to offer commercial banking services to the Nigerian public and commenced services on the same day, and still struggling to stay afloat is in another mess.

Most customers of Polaris bank now sleep with one eye opened watching transactions on their accounts with the susceptible financial house as account officers and staff of Polaris bank have developed fast fingers that pilfer from clients’ at will and very reckless at it.

Take the case of Ajibola Sanusi, a Nigerian resident in the United States from whose account staff of the bank stole over N20 million from his savings account number 281224****.

According to report, Sanusi had opened a savings account with Polaris Bank, Computer Village, Lagos in 2018 and deposited over N25 million in the said account from United States where he is currently based.

A check on the account statement showed that a total of N19,732,190 was stolen by an employee of the bank between July 5 and 12, within a week after Sanusi called the bank and directed that the account should be blocked.

Using proxies, the money was transferred to different accounts belonging to Gbenga Adebisi Florence, Abdulazeem Olamide Bello, Dudafa Preye, Sakirat Adesiju and Shukurat Tayo Ibitoye without Sanusi’s authorisation.

“So I visited Nigeria last week and found out my savings account had been tampered with by the staff of Polaris Bank, Computer Village branch, Ikeja, Lagos. Over N20 million was stolen from me,” Sanusi told SaharaReporters.

“For the 3 months, I realised I stopped receiving my monthly email alerts, which bothered me. So on June 18, 2021, I received an alert of the debited sum of N50, so I called the customer services immediately and the lady asked if I was familiar with the name Ismail Bello and I responded that it sounded familiar but I couldn’t remember. She said the person was my account officer, so I asked her what would my account officer want to do with N50?

“She said he might do that to track my balance, so I asked how much is my balance at the moment and she told me the exact amount I was expecting to hear.

“So I told her to please block my account and that no one is authorised to make any withdrawal except me and that it has to be me coming physically and she claimed she did it. So arriving in Nigeria on Saturday, 17th of July at about 11:45 am, I got to my branch where I opened the account and was told I didn’t have enough balance in my account.

“At first, I thought it was a joke, so one of their staff members came to me and showed me a fake Nigerian passport that was used to create an online banking

“According to what a staff of Polaris Bank showed me, I could see they have a record. I called in on June 18 requesting them to block my account. I requested for a printout copy of the statements and I saw how my money was being transferred on a daily basis to different accounts.

“They transferred the money after I had blocked the account, I think the so-called Ismail Bello removed the N50 intentionally to see maybe I would visit the bank. Maybe because he didn’t see me, he and others thought something bad had happened to me and stole my money.”

Worried by the development, the board of Polaris Bank has opened investigations into the disappearance of N20million from the bank account of a customer, Ajibola Sanusi with account number 28122***.

In a letter sent to Sanusi through his lawyer, Olumide Ajetumobi, the bank said, “Please be informed that immediate investigation has commenced into the issues and we will revert upon completion of same.”

The letter was jointly signed by Oluyemi Idowu and Seun Popoola of the financial institution’s legal services department.

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