Damage to African Bank branches ’extensive’
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African Bank said yesterday that the damage to its branch infrastructure was extensive.
Last week’s civil unrest and looting in parts of KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) and Gauteng incurred damage to 32 of the bank’s 396 national branch network.
Of the 32 damaged branches, 17 were situated in shopping centres in KZN and 15 were in the townships and surrounding areas of Gauteng.
The bank was quantifying the losses and conducting site assessments so that branch sites could be reinstated as quickly as possible, but this would take time to occur.
African Bank said many of its customers had already moved over to online banking as a result of the pandemic so they experienced little disruption.
Shannon Timothy, African Bank’s channel executive said: “At the outset of the unrest, we took precautionary action and closed all of our KZN and some of our Gauteng branches. None of our staff were therefore directly impacted by the ensuing vandalism. The damage to our branch infrastructure is, however, extensive.”
“No employee retrenchments are anticipated and redeployment and cross-skilling opportunities are currently being considered for these employees,” Timothy said.
African Bank said it did not have an ATM network and relied on ATMs from other banking networks, many of which were damaged. The bank said it had partnerships with various retailers where cash could be withdrawn or deposited by customers.