Paschal Emeka, Abuja
Members of Abuja Mobile Market (AMM) has made a clarion call to the Federal Government to save them from the hands of commercial and microfinance banks in Nigeria.
Members of AMM are online traders who transact business online especially during the time of lockdown caused by Covid – 19 pandemic in Nigeria.
Chairman of the online traders Chief Suuny Bright Chukwu, who doubles as the Chairman of Igbo Traders Association in Abuja made the appeal in his office on behalf of his members during an interview.
While making the appeal, he said: “FG has been doing well, but most of online traders in the market have been suffering from untold hardship as a result of the pandemic. During the lockdown which lasted for about four months, some of us collected loans from commercial banks which we have not paid back and it doesn’t concern the banks.
“As you know, banks don’t care if you are doing well or not, because they’re in for business, without caring about what their customers are passing through. And that is the worst aspect of it, because whether you like it or not, they insist that you pay back the loans and if you can’t, they will come to your shop to embarrass you.
“The most affected are the petty traders. Banks come from time to time to recover their money, not putting into consideration what we really passed through before and after the lockdown.
“So we are humbly appealing to the FG to come to our rescue from the commercial and the microfinance banks where our members obtained loans. Let the FG intervene through the Central Bank of Nigeria.”
Chukwu when asked if he was not aware of the Covid -19 intervention fund the FG has mapped out for traders, through microfinance and commercial banks to cushion the effect of the pandemic. To that end, he appealed to the FG to map out funds for business men and women. He said if the fund is given to the real traders, it would go a long way to revive the businesses and the economy in general.
Chukwu said that he couldn’t narrate what they passed through during the lockdown, which he said affected their businesses and families and other dependents in no small measure. He appealed to the government to handle the issue of increase in the fuel pump price and electricity tariff carefully, even as he added that the government must have reason for taking the action.