Babalola Sues CBN Over Card Maintenance Fee

Babalola Sues CBN Over Card Maintenance Fee

Olumide Babalola, a Lagos-based legal practitioner has filed a suit against the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Following the circular it issued to all banks and other financial institutions on Guide to Bank Charges which includes quarterly card maintenance fee of N50 for all savings accounts.

The lawyer, through the suit, is urging the court to nullify the December 20, 2019 circular issued by the CBN to all banks and non-bank commercial institutions for the enforcement of the card maintenance charge.

National Sportslink gathered that Babalola contended that the N50 card maintenance charge was in bad faith, against public interest and urged the court to declare it null and void.

He prayed for an order of perpetual injunction restraining the CBN and others from charging the N50 card maintenance fee, saying it was “merely an avenue to generate income for commercial banks at the expense of the public.”

In the Suit with No. FHC/L/CS/2400/2019 filed at the Federal High Court in Lagos, the Plaintiff seeks the following orders against the Central Bank:

1. A DECLARATION the Defendant’s regulation for the charge of N50 quarterly card maintenance fee at page 20 of the “Re: Guide to Charges By Banks, Other Financial And Non-Bank Institutions” dated December 20, 2019, is in bad faith, not in the public interest, null and void.
2. AN ORDER setting aside Card Maintenance Fee as found on page 20 of the Defendant’s “Re: Guide to Charges By Banks, Other Financial And Non-Bank Institutions” dated December 20, 2019.
3. PERPETUAL INJUNCTION restraining the Defendant and anyone claiming through them charging Card Maintenance Fee from the Plaintiff’s bank account on the basis of the Defendant’s “Re: Guide to Charges By Banks, Other Financial And Non-Bank Institutions” dated December 20, 2019.
4. Such other consequential Order (s) that this honourable court may deem fit to grant in the circumstance.

The Plaintiff claims, among other things that, the Card Maintenance Fee is against public interest and in bad faith since the cards remain in the custody of the bank account holders, hence the banks could not have been maintaining the cards remotely.