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Exclusive: Banks around the World begin Closing Nigerians’ Accounts



dreamstime_s_17890746BellaNaija can confirm that banks around the world have commenced closing accounts held by Nigerians.

If you may recall, in May 2015, news filtered through social media that accounts of Nigerians in the UAE specifically in Dubai had been closed.
At the time, no official reason was given, however sources at the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) disclosed that this was as a result of Dubai’s efforts to curb money laundering.

A growing Nigerians with accounts in the United Kingdom, United States and Canada have reported their accounts being closed without any clear explanation from the banks. Many have received letters stating that the banks have decided to close their accounts as they reserve the right to do so based on bank/client agreements. Letter packages have included cheques amounting to the closing balance and/or instructions on how to retrieve their cash.

While there is no clear and official reason for this exercise, sources have revealed that this is as a result of ongoing anti-money laundering discussions between the Nigeria’s Buhari-led government and their international counterparts.

In addition, countries around the world are clamping down on banks which aid money laundering by imposing huge fines and penalties. Therefore, the banks are working overtime to “clean up their acts”. In June 2015, it was revealed that HSBC paid over $43million in Geneva to settle a money laundering case.

Please note that based on information received so far, while no clear pattern for account closing selection has been revealed; Affected parties have excluded those who have a clear and defined source of the funds in the account. For example, work permit holders with salaries remitted into their accounts or  current students with fees and reasonable pocket money paid into their accounts have not been affected so far.

However, Nigerians who transfer money from their Nigerian accounts to foreign accounts, students with unexplained large balances and Nigerians who made cash deposits into their accounts abroad have been affected so far.

BN will keep you updated on developments. If you have a foreign account, we encourage you to check the status as soon as possible and continue to monitor your accounts as this is an ongoing exercise.

Photo Credit: © Hubenov |


  1. Cookie Luscious

    September 14, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    Ghen Ghen!!!!!! It has started. I like this step taken just that i pity the innocent ones involved.

    • smh

      September 14, 2015 at 3:10 pm

      i know UAE started it like two years has nothing to do with your buhari. Nigerians go there to defraud bands and then disappear.always get your facts before giving unnecessary credit to Buhari

  2. me

    September 14, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    Very good development

  3. Missthain

    September 14, 2015 at 12:36 pm

    This might sound mean, but I like this approach. If you have nothing to hide you should be able to give a legit explanation of your account balance

  4. A Loco Viva Voce

    September 14, 2015 at 12:37 pm

    Oh my! This is such bad news. So if they close the accounts, what happens to all that money?

    • Divaclan

      September 14, 2015 at 5:00 pm

      The owners will receive a check of the amount in their accounts or be told how to get it

  5. where are the Goodluck Jonathan adherents

    September 14, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    where are the goodluck adherents?
    show your face

    • FasholasLover

      September 14, 2015 at 8:09 pm

      How daft can you be. So, in your small mind only GoodLuck stole. Tinubu is a saint. So is Fashola, Amaechi etc and even Buhari Very Idiotic comment. The UAE started this long ago. Very soon ya all will attribute the air you breathe to Buhari your god. Worshipper Oshi. Bet you knees must hurt.

  6. ada

    September 14, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    very good…maybe they will now steal the money and hide it in their house or in their village or bedroom….wen some people use foreign accounts for wrong means even the innocent has to suffer..thats the price we all have to pay to stop corruption and stealing.

    • nene+

      September 14, 2015 at 1:13 pm

      You pay for it, not me! I wasn’t born for collateral damage!
      If any bank tries that crap with me I will take it up with that nation!

      Enough of right infringement! Target your workers not me! Followers can spill their blood for his s***t but don’t drag me into your cult!

    • Zara

      September 14, 2015 at 7:20 pm

      Wetin dey worry this one? Abeg go and hug transformer jarey…typical example of empty vessels makn d loudest noise. U fit get like only 5k for acct as you dey so oo….lmao! *e pain am*

    • Smackdown

      September 15, 2015 at 12:14 am

      Righhhhtttttttttt and my daddy is Dangote. Sit down girl ain’t no one looking at you

  7. tee

    September 14, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    very good development….. i hope this will force down the exchange rates

    • nene+

      September 15, 2015 at 7:43 am

      Hahahahahahahahaha I feel you zara and the other babe. No matter how big or little its great deal to me cos every penny was earned thru hard work.

      Don’t let the amount bother you dearie let’s focus on our right. Not boastfulooo nene+ still ransack Mashalls, bouglinton,buy sales. I am a regular girl darl ,no do bad beleoooo lol.

  8. nnenne

    September 14, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    Nigerians will always believe anything.

    • Tkum

      September 14, 2015 at 1:13 pm


    • ?

      September 14, 2015 at 1:14 pm

      Why cant you believe this?

  9. nene+

    September 14, 2015 at 1:07 pm

    Errrm at the end of the day it is my right to own account outside Nigeria, fund the account with my income.

    Am just wondering if Zhara Buhari’s account in Baclays will be closed for receiving funds abnormal for a student!

    Buhari is crude, dictatorial and authoritative. Are you saying successful Nigerian. Who are non politicians can not have huge deposits in their foreign account. Even USA, UK can not stop her people from opening and running accounts oversees. You can only apply MORAL SUASION! Even an outright barn on politicians and families makes more sense and not hard-working non politicians like me.

    Buhari has been attending to his health abroad why not prohibit that? Why ban the ones that does not affect you? Will Saraki who is also British not run a British account?

    Is Osibajo account going to be closed? Gbaja etc?

    How sustainable will this be? So if I travel to Australia and I can bank my holiday monies if allowed is now illegal in Nigeria.

    Africa needs strong institutions and not strong men – Barack Obama.

    Too many strong men in Africa, too many weak institutions.

    Buhari face your workers who are politicians not me.

    • Sweerie

      September 14, 2015 at 1:38 pm

      Please shut up and stop making noise! If your money is legitimate, you defend it! Be there blabbing. You can’t do nothing if first world countries decide to close or suspend your account in the advent of anti money laundering scheme, so please mechionu gi biko!

    • Bruno teacher fearce

      September 14, 2015 at 1:58 pm

      Fortunately for nene+ first world countries don’t joke with human rights.
      So sweerie u where crudely wrong.

      Nene was very right. And there is nothing like mechie onu gi faking Igbo sweerie.

    • or

      September 14, 2015 at 2:01 pm

      Sweerie you must be a daft!
      Why do you come here to sound like one of buhari tolo tolo in his farm?

      Kill your self for buhari and it’s right ode oshi.

    • nene+

      September 14, 2015 at 2:10 pm

      @ sweerie Have I blasphemed against your god buhari? Has your eyeballs been poked?

      Unfortunately for you America and other developed countries understands the rights of individuals and as such they will not yield to a dictator like an African certificate less buhari without economic sense nor value whatsoever.

    • ...

      September 14, 2015 at 2:00 pm

      @nene This is to curb money laundering, but obviously this went over your head.
      “Are you saying successful Nigerian. Who are non politicians can not have huge deposits in their foreign account”. If you have nothing to hide and making honest money in Nigeria, why not bank your money in Nigeria. There’s a reason why they don’t, huge deposit of money is going to raise questions, and if 2 plus 2 don’t add up, I am just saying NOT ALL successful people in Nigeria make there money honestly.

      I hope this crack down applies to politicians as well ( it better be because they are majorly the ones doing the laundering). Its a step towards curbing corruption, things have to start from somewhere haba.

    • slice

      September 14, 2015 at 3:04 pm

      Nigerians as well as no nigerians dint bank their money in nigeria bc nigeria is unstable. Every new govt has new rules. Every new day a new one. These rules are hardly vetted through a thorough democratic process. We cant grow if pple cant rely on our laws

    • ?

      September 14, 2015 at 3:30 pm

      @slice “Nigerians as well as no nigerians dint bank their money in nigeria bc nigeria is unstable” what country is stable lol? pls explain what you mean by Nigerians don’t bank their money in Nigeria? I send money into my account in Nigeria every month to save, and I live abroad, so does a lot of people I know. I get notification from my bank whenever I pay money in and when I visit Nigeria the money is still there. Like I don’t understand? isn’t that banking.

    • nnenne

      September 14, 2015 at 11:31 pm

      Another propaganda. ..this closing of accounts.
      People can always believe what they want to hear, be it true or false.
      My fellow country men, ask intelligent questions.
      Any concrete proof?
      In 2015, we are still believing these folk tales, beer parlor stories, market women / hair braiders’ tales, tales by the moon light. SAD.
      Media spinning has taken another dimension.

    • slice

      September 15, 2015 at 12:29 am

      It was a response to someone questioning why any legitimate person wld choose to bank abroad. Of course some folks bank in nigeria
      If u dont knowvthe nign investment environment is nt stable,…..

    • Laii Muhamed

      September 14, 2015 at 2:46 pm

      Buhari has seen that the southern Vice president is richer so he wants to harm him! Otio baba while Osibaba was working for his money you where sipping Kunu, eating kulikuli masara and kubewa.

      We people of the South earn our monies through hard work unlike your lazy brothersooo.
      Emi ogba eleyioooo
      O gidi gan. Shoro ni yen?

  10. micheal

    September 14, 2015 at 1:30 pm

    when you sell your nation on a silver platter this is what will happen. who doesn’t know that america is the worst corrupt nation in the world. who were those sponsoring the terrorist during Jonathan ruin. now they want to close accounts of Nigerians. if there are people in government who facilitated and help terrorism during the ruin of Jonathan to kill innocent souls because of politics; God will punish them.

  11. robby

    September 14, 2015 at 2:13 pm

    We are slowly losing our rights and we celebrate the initiative, may God help Nigeria, military regime here we come.

  12. ?

    September 14, 2015 at 2:28 pm

    LOL some of the comments on here are testament that not everyone in Nigeria wants change! Oh well, we are all entitled to our opinions beliefs and values.

    • !

      September 14, 2015 at 4:55 pm

      Go Siddon!!!

    • ?

      September 14, 2015 at 5:57 pm

      You first!!!

    • I'm epic y'all

      September 14, 2015 at 6:54 pm

      Epic response! #can’tdeal

    • Scholes

      September 20, 2015 at 8:01 am

      Has anything really changed in Nigeria. People talk about impunity and the abuse of the laws in the last 16 years, what do we see? Have the governors chanting the change slogans declared their assets yet? If the proposed ministerial list is the exact list we have seen being bandied about is truly the names of people PMB has decided to make his ministers, then I really wonder what he has waited this long to destroy our economy before picking his ministers because it’s very obvious nothing has changed. We still have godfathers in play and he has even sold the Federal Inland Revenue to his godfather – Jagaban who already have the Lagos LIRS in his kitty. So my friend, Nigerians don’t hate change … we just realised that we have been duped. A government that has already told us not to expect miracles? denied their electoral promises and love to use media propaganda can not be trusted to make the right changes we truly need.

  13. Fela Kuti

    September 14, 2015 at 2:36 pm

    Animal can’t dash us human right * 2

    Human right na my property *2

    They wan dash us human right * 2

    Tinubu betrayed Yorubas! Sold us to slavery.

    • Lolarae

      September 14, 2015 at 3:09 pm

      Please wetin concern Tinubu with this news for christ sake
      God heal you from Phobia

  14. IsaidIt

    September 14, 2015 at 3:01 pm

    personally as non nigerian (Thank God) – i think all nigerians who have accounts abroad over a certain amount should be banned. You cant trust these people. Nobody trust you. Not even africans let alone whites. That thing is in their blood

    • Anon

      September 14, 2015 at 4:48 pm

      A non-Nigerian trolling a Nigerian blog. The joke is on you troll!

    • Nuna

      September 14, 2015 at 5:11 pm

      Foolish fool! Wtf are you doing on bellanaija if u cant trust us? Please gerrarrahia!

    • Smackdown

      September 15, 2015 at 12:22 am

      @Isaidlt,….pele, I want to personally apologize on behalf of Nigerians. I understand your see I would be mad too if I saved all my salary for wizkid’s concert only to be told it was sold out. But it’s ok look on the bright size it seems you were able to use to money to go the one Internet cafe in the next village in order to be able to type this message. See? All is not lost, that 3hr trek was worth it. Now trek the F- outta here..FOOL!!

  15. Koffie

    September 14, 2015 at 3:36 pm

    @Nenne, if your money was earned through hardwork, aka you can show evidence of legal streams of reasonable income, I doubt you’d be touched. And I won’t get tired of saying it, if you want reliable news on finance/politics et al, BN is not the place for it.
    You can’t attribute the banks’ moves to Buhari. Buhari can’t directly control them. Some of these occurrences are as a result of the country’s loss of goodwill due to JP Morgan’s recent move amongst other things. You may disagree with me but sha be civil.

    • SLA

      September 14, 2015 at 4:32 pm

      lol, I agree with you, I’m shocked at the comments on BN linking Buhari with this and saying all sort. I really think it has something to do with the delistin. Moreover, it was clearly stated that if the source of money is legitimate, you have nthing to fear.

  16. The Bull

    September 14, 2015 at 3:36 pm

    it is foolish to generalize, based on your logic you are probably a murderer or robber, because some people from your country are.

  17. Anonymous

    September 14, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    Hmm . . why conceal lucre in a realm where (after using same legal tender to dote on their autochthons) they eventually catechize JAMB questions? Ee, I descry – y’all ain’t still passed JAMB, yes?

  18. xag

    September 14, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    Who writes these stories? My wealth managers have been calling me to open new corporate accounts for the last three weeks. Other than the two I have elsewhere in the UAE. Make una leave these stories abeg.

  19. sharryb

    September 14, 2015 at 7:02 pm

    Well the evidence speaks for itself.We know whats been going on before the banks did,abego

  20. sharryb

    September 14, 2015 at 7:03 pm

    The truth hurts but for real, the thieves are everywhere even in the banks themselves.

  21. Kemmie

    September 14, 2015 at 8:30 pm

    I hope Nigerians in diaspora are not going to be affected. As we work pretty hard to make our money.
    Just asking, Bellanaijans please do crucify…..

  22. nnenne

    September 14, 2015 at 11:56 pm

    @Kemmie… Please relax. This is another abstract, propaganda, to keep poor gullible Nigerians busy.

  23. Nik

    September 15, 2015 at 3:02 am

    Most of the comments here are just plain ridiculous.

    I can actually attest to the truth in this write up in the US. Chase bank and Bank of America have done it to innocent people and no, there is no call for explanation of how you got the money, they just close your account. So, those of you saying ” if you got your money in a legitimate manner you should prove it”, know the bank doesnt have time to ask you to come prove it. And with the chain of command, most of the staff in these banks are unable to tell you whats going on cos they cant pinpoint where the order came from. All you know is that you have been told you cant bank with the bank anymore.

    Fortunately, you get your balance bank. Unfortunately, you quit using a bank you have used for many years and you are left with the inconvenience of having to go find another bank you can use who may wake up tomorrow and kick you out because you have a huge some of money in your account. And you can NEVER bank with these banks EVER again (oh well, or until something happens in the future). I am yet to see this new act affecting the ones involved in money laundering, but i have seen couple of innocent people who work hard for their money being affected with this new outcome.

    And yes, you can be gainfully employed and legitimately get your money and save them in a foreign or offshore account. If you are investment minded (whether business or otherwise), then you know the importance of doing that. That is, for those people crucifying people who have accounts outside naija.

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