I went to a nearby ATM machine today to withdrew few cash for immediate use thinking it's what I could do within minutes as usual, but I ended up spending 3 hours because of the sheer number of people waiting for their turn.
So, we decided to check on other ATMs in different places across the state to see if it's the same thing. In some of the ATMs we visited, we counted up to five hundred people waiting for their turn. In one of the bank somewhere in the outskirt of Ikorodu, a man we spoke to, confirmed to us he had been on and off the queue for the past 5 hours, waiting for the machine to be loaded with cash.
In some places we visited, we found out that the cause of the long queue was either as a result of faulty machine or bad network. While in most places, it was as a result of the overwhelming number of people waiting to be serviced at the same time, coupled with few number of ATMs available. In some banks, you'd see up to seven ATMs but only one will be working, forcing people to queue behind the only available one and waiting several hours to get to their turn.
From our findings, it is clear that customers are increasingly finding it difficult to use their ATMs in Nigeria, raising serious question about the sustainability of the cashless policy the CBN recently introduced. There have been cases where people were forced to go begging in the street because ATM could not work.