At long last, there is a central administration in place that is headed by those who have the courage to go after the commercial banks in our country. For far too long, commercial banks, some of them operating on a fantastic profit level, have been continually applying additional charges to the people.
There was a time, in the distant past, when banks afforded interest payments on savings accounts. Indeed, Bahamians reveled in the fact that within a year, the amounts on their saving accounts, supplemented by interest payments, provided tidy sums to assist at Christmas time. Now, when account holders go to tellers for any sort of activity, fees are applied against, not for.
This egregious matter has been escalating for decades now. It incredibly, has been a yoke on the sternness of character of many women who prided themselves on building up funds through savings accounts, aided by the interest payments. Yes, indeed, once ago, many mothers operated with tightened weekly and monthly home budgets just to see the interest payments on savings accounts increase in an appreciable way.
Young gentlemen and ladies took great pride in starting savings accounts and building their initial financial foundations. Now, there is disillusionment regarding commercial banks across the board. Folks operate bank accounts, savings and otherwise, out of necessity. There are those though who have no interest at all in dealing with the banks. They actually think of the banks as a collective public enemy.
Yesterday, the Consumer Affairs Division of the Ministry of Labor acted. On page four of The Freeport News today, readers will be able to digest the full statement. This government agency intends to address in a profound way, we believe, the deplorable habit, it seems, commercial banks have of indiscriminately hiking fees.
We congratulate Minister of Labor Dion Foulkes and the Government of The Bahamas, led by Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis for mounting this effort on behalf of the Bahamian people, and other residents of this country. It has long been felt that the Central Bank of The Bahamas has been lax in this regard. Perhaps the head entity in the financial sector of the country, all along, just needed to be handed a directive from the top.
PM Dr. Minnis is certainly tackling some issues in this country that his two predecessors just did not have stomach for.
Amazingly, the man some liked to call weak, the one they thought incapable of the type of strong leadership the country needed, is shaping up quite well as prime minister.
We ask that the Consumer Affairs Division of the Ministry of Labor, headed by Minister Dion Foulkes holds strong in the upcoming discussions about the increased bank fees.
The people deserve as much.