At least seven digital loan companies operating in Ikeja, Lagos, were raided in a joint operation with the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) on Friday for a “possible violation” of consumer rights.
The operation led by the commission’s boss, Babatunde Irukera, was in response to several complaints of malpractices on the part of the lenders.
The companies – GoCash, Okash, EasyCredit, Kashkash, Speedy Choice, Easy Moni – owned by Blue Ridge operate on the third floor of a four-storey building in the area.
During the operation, Mr Irukera told the over 800 employees of the purpose of the raid and their rights.
Soko Loan, another lending company, operates in another location in the area with over 150 employees and some of its employees protested the seizure of their equipment.
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The operations were carried out by the FCCPC, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), and the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).
Addressing the press, Mr Irukere said the loan companies rose to prominence due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 lockdown.
“Because people were on lockdown due to the pandemic, people started needing small easy loans which is understandable.
“But over a period of time, people started complaining about the malpractices of the lenders so we started tracking it.