The House of Representatives yesterday accused banks of encouraging prostitution by setting unrealistic targets for their female marketers. It also decried casualisation in the industry, describing it as slavery.
Hon. Segun Alexander Adekola, who sponsored the motion entitled, “Urgent Need to Curb Unwholesome Practices of Banks in Nigeria,” said staffers who don’t meet the largely unrealistic targets are summarily dismissed.
Contributing to the motion which led to a long debate, Hon. Rita Orji said in some cases, bankers who failed to meet targets were sacked through text messages.
Adekola said: “A critical assessment of the targets being given to these employees to meet, show them to be unrealistic, unreasonable, ordinarily unattainable and irrational.
“But these banks resort to unethical means to ensure that these targets are met by either explicitly or impliedly encouraging their staff, especially the female ones to engage in illicit behaviour.”
House Majority Leader, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, recalled that he made an attempt to stop the practice with his Corporate Prostitution Bill presented in the Sixth Assembly, saying that the bill got to the stage of a public hearing, but some bankers shot it down.”
Gbajabiamila, who expressed disappointment that top female bankers equally raised objections to the bill, noted that some of the local banks with international affiliations, wouldn’t attempt to send their staff out to solicit for funds in their home countries.
Citing Section 34 of the Constitution which protects Nigerians from inhuman and downgrading treatment, he said the motion was timely as it would draw attention to the undignified treatment bankers are being put through.
“Marriages have been wrecked and homes destroyed because of this practice and I am sure that none of us here will allow our daughters to be involved in this,” he said.
Speaker Yakubu Dogara, while calling for a voice vote on the motion, stressed the need to “appeal to the conscience” of the bank managements to desist from sending out young men and women to solicit for million naira deposits.
The House mandated its Committee on Banking and Currency to investigate the unwholesome practices and report its findings within a month.
Meanwhile, lawmakers also resolved yesterday to donate N5million to the Nigerian Legion. Hon. Gbajabiamila raised the motion under Matters of National Public Importance, calling on the House to support President Muhammadu Buhari who on Monday donated N10 million to the legion.