Off the wall of Charles Simango: CDH Investment Bank

Nyasa Times is introducing a new column called ‘Off the Wall Of …’  We will be taking a Malawi Facebook Post of the Day and republish on Nyasa Times. This article is reposted with permission from the Facebook wall of the author.

I called CDH Investment Bank, Lilongwe, this morning, to inquire about a certain, unique facility they have. I clearly explained to the operator that I needed to talk to someone who is familiar with all the products and services – in other words, someone who can sale CDH Investment Bank to me.

Reserve Bank of Malawi governor Charles Chuka shakes hands with CDH Investment bank board chair Franklin Kennedy

Reserve Bank of Malawi governor Charles Chuka shakes hands with CDH Investment bank board chair Franklin Kennedy

In his wisdom, the operator decided to transfer me to, of all places, the inquiries desk, where a lady responded with a very unconvincing ‘hullo’, did not give her name, let alone ask me ‘how can I help you today’.

I asked her if she was sure she was the right person to sell CDH to me and she said she would try or else she would take my details and arrange for a meeting. Then, as expected, she put me on hold, and went on to attend to someone who wanted two copies of something, ‘one for us and one for you’.

She then came back online, hulloed me once and – cut the line. And now I have to start looking for another bank with that particular type of product because, now, I know, that if they cannot smell a sell and run after it with all they have, how much less attention will they give me once they get my money?

I may not be worth millions, let alone a million, but every inquiry in a business needs to be handled with extra attention by professional customer acquisition personnel because every inquiry is a potential customer, and who knows, he may be that one customer who brings you 80% of your revenue.

I may not be that person today, or ever, and that is fine with me. BUT do not dare calling me when you start seeing my embarrassing blessings on this wall! You are just starting and already you are behaving like National Bank of Malawi where the sole purpose of the bank is to treat bank customers as mere statistics and nothing more.

The only time you get good service, there, is when you are assisted by someone you know or someone who knows you. Nanji ukakumana ndi customer service officer wa chikazi, amayo, you are dead in the water. Umangosuzumila ndi kubwelera. Amakhala nthawi zonse ali ndungundu, kuoneka okwiya, kwinaku akumanamizira kukhala busy. (worse still when you come across a female customer services officer, just know you are dead in the water. You just peep and turn back. They are wearing angry faces all the time, pretending to be busy) I thought you are supposed to be busy with me?

I cry for the days of Patricia Mwase (she was Nee Dinala , at that time, I think) when she was serving ar Chichiri Branch and Mercy Chibwana who was then at Haile Selassie Branch. I remember, people actually used to refuse to be assisted by anyone, preferring Mercy even when the other officers were free. We were like, ‘no, I will wait for her, its personal’.

Anyway, I digress, this was about CDH. I think Esau and team have a fantastic vision as far as investment banking in Malawi is concerned. I have a lot of respect for people who are onto something new and Esau and his team make me proud.

Unfortunately, if what I encountered today is a representation of how their sales funnel works, then I am very disappointed. So for now, just know that when mdalitso wanga wonyazitsa (my embarrassing blessing) arrives and you send your officers to come sell me CDH services I will turn you down, and I will say unto you: I came knocking and you did not open. I will then proceed to toss your officers through the window of MY posh office which will be located on the 21ST FLOOR of MY towering office complex (yeah, how about that for a very tall blessing? Never limit your vision, people!). Until then, cry my beloved country. Eish!

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51 thoughts on “Off the wall of Charles Simango: CDH Investment Bank”

  1. mpopoma says:

    National bank is another boring bank too old people with very little technology and not ready to learn. THe forex dept. Manager is also a disgrace at Mzuzu branch . I had a trip to south africa and i applied for forex . He said I should wait for two weeks. I ask why?.he couldn’t give an answer. Put appropriate people with good customer service

  2. Mafikizolo says:

    Very mature and pertinent article, written by a very mature and “relevant” author . Is this a sign of “things to come” on Nyasatimes? We are tired of reading shallow and pointless articles on this forum . By the way, charles umatichotsa manyazi ife ma contemporaries ako apa Chanco . Keep up the good work my brother .

  3. Ziguole says:

    Of banks and customer care, There’s a lady secretary at Indebank headquarters kaya ndi was CEO kaya but she seats close to their boardroom, I have never seen rudeness the way this lady behaves, she could not even assist the senior managers that I was meeting, in-fact I got an impression that they all feared her and yet she is only a secretary! …kaya mwina abwana amadya mmenemo kaya koma noooo the lady is rude!

  4. Or banks are a shame despite having among the highest interest rates and service charges in the region. When treating customers its like they are doing you a favor otherwise they expect customers to plead for a service which in turn benefits them more than us customers, what a shame!

  5. puludzu says:

    In Malawi long queues are a measure of business success not transaction volumes per day. They enjoy when they see those queues. They feel important and relevant. Unfortunately, this has given room for corruption (bribes) at offices such as Road Traffic, Immigration, DCs, Admarc, MRA, etc. They like to maintain it that way yet there are so many modern solutions to deal with these inefficiencies. On the other hand it is ourselves sometimes to blame. We tolerate mediocrity. We give them the impression that we are there to beg. Call a spade a spade and shout at these bastards. They will change.

  6. Namate says:

    Mwaiwala ma Insurance mabwana. One day i was told to close my policy by one Bwana at NICo in Mzuzu just because she could not explain some other issues ikakhala PRIME ndiye mwanu wokhawokha. Musayesere dala kugula mapolicy Ku NICO ndi anthu amwano zedi makaka ku mzuzu kuno sayankha phone nkhope zawo nthawi zonse ndi ndwiiiiiiiiiii ngati afiti

  7. Namate says:

    Mwaiwala ma Insurance mabwana. One ay i was told to close my account by one Bwana at NICo in Mzuzu just because she could not explain some other issues ikakhala PRIME ndiye mwanu wokhawokha. Musayesere dala kugula mapolicy Ku NICO ndi anthu amwano zedi makaka ku mzuzu kuno sayankha phone nkhope zawo nthawi zonse ndi ndwiiiiiiiiiii ngati afiti

  8. Titani says:

    I agree with Matewere that NBM will only like you when you have money but once you don’t have any they don’t want even to look at you. Imagine they have a special room for what they call platinum customers who are very special because they have money. Their banking is done by special assistants while they enjoy coffee.

  9. weaklicks says:

    Well national bank with their stupid system of numbers where people would just come get the number and sit as if they are waiting for service while they are observing who is cashing big money and they will then send text to their friend outside giving your description and once you are out those outside will trail you until they rob you.

  10. clement says:

    Female tellers are a disgrace. Banks now employ more female tellers in a way of fashion. They are a headache to most customers. I will never forgive a “waiter” at NedBank Chichiri Shoprite. The lady behaves as if you are bothering her when u ask her qtions. Although its my branch I prefer Nedbank Bt branch. If she is still there she is doing a disservice to the bank

  11. namaoda says:

    For me every time i have transacted in the banking hall of NBS capital city i leave very very mad and resolving to close my account with this bank. Several of my collegues concur on this. One has already closed.

  12. Where’s is mayi Nthindwa? She used to be a very good trainer in banking. Most of successful bankers in Malawi have gone through her teachings. She could b frail but stil very useful.

  13. FBI says:

    Syndicate being done by the police and cell phone providers where they are generating call logs without court orders. There are officials at Airtel and TNM who are doing this .one police officer says you just pay 1500 and they will be able to get your call log. Don’t be cheated about any privicy because the police and some officers at airtel and TMN are able to get your call logs without your authority or a court order. One officer who stays in Chilobwe makes me living out of this arrangement by working with these cell phone companies.

  14. Nyau Sinthabwala Dala says:

    Let me add an opinion on a comment by banker, posted some threads below. I understand it infuriates other people for not being allowed to carry huge amounts of forex when travelling abroad due to forex control measures by RBM.

    I find this irresponsible and stupid on the part of those travellers. One would think that by now everyone is able to understands that Malawi’s forex earning is very poor. Therefore our forex is not for play. It is supposed to be spent on strictly essential services and goods only.

    Furthermore without those controls you could end up with MWK depreciating dangerously. In fact if I were governor myself, I would reduce those daily allowance allocatons even further, after all most that travel outside never use that money for travel. They use it go and buy buy stupit things like oranges, apples mafuta oyeretsa khungu etc instead of buying machinery, computers, pencils and chalk – items that have a transformational effect our country’s economy.

  15. william Matewere says:

    National bank has posted a cool 14billion yet they leave a lot to be desired in terms of service or creating millionaires .I have been a customer for over twenty years yet they decided to close my account. One morning some lady called me to say that my account had not been active and they were considering of closing it. Yet when I checked balance it was showing negative balance when all along I had left money in my account. Guess what these bankers were busy making my account active by posting their ledger fees. They posted ledger fees all the time I was not using my account that now they had consumed all my money and ended up giving themselves ledger fees overdraft and when they saw that I was not depositing so that they could off set their overdraft that’s when they called me to inform me that they were closing my account. While I was not against the closure but I thought the first thing would have been to invite me to find out what was happening for me not to be banking. May be suggest to me what the bank could offer to help me out to sustain my business. Well what I want to say is that NBM will be your friend when you have money and the only ovetdraft they can offer without hisstles is when they want to collect their ledger fees so that they happily declare billions in profits.

  16. mulopwana says:

    I want to make a small comment as as an ex- member of staff of National Bank of Malawi after 30 years service. This bank has really gone down so tremendously regards good customer service. I don’t know whether their cashiers are still being trained on customer handling. This breed is so rude, inefficient and have an I don’t care attitude. I recall during our time, there was a course called CUSTOMER CARE. Trainers would sometimes be hired from abroad. It was a serious course that was given the highest priority. We were taught in simple term that a customer was not coming to the bank to beg, but rather to give us bread and butter for our families. 90% of customers did not come in to see the manager. They didn’t even know him. Customers came to the bank to transact with front line staff. To most customers, front line staff translated as the owners of the bank meaning, any silly actions done by these cashiers were taken so seriously by customers as being done by owners of the bank. A cashier was given targeted average time limit in which to complete a single transaction of one customer. And this was being automatically recorded in the computer, checked by a supervisor (cash officer) at the end of each day. A cashier’s performance appraisal was also determined by these measurements. If the bank wants to maintain its valued customers. Please don’t sleep. Your front line staff are pulling you down. You have been warned.

  17. Zefaniya says:

    Charles ,Patricia Mwase was Patricia Dinala.Now the owner of Credit Data.Hey the woman was good.I remember Judge Hanjahanja (MHSRIP) who was my boss had just gone to check his balance having been transferred from Lilongwe and he was served by her.He came back he called me to his office and told me he wished Malawi had 5 Patricia’s he claimed she was superb.Next thing he told me to go and collect forms as he wanted to open an account at Chichiri.When i went and met told her about the Judge she referred to him as Dad.I told him he was very excited and mmmmmhhh he always gave me his check to cash for him but i should always go through his daughter to check if it will go through. I also opened mine at Chichiri NBM and never regretted.Indeed those were the days.

  18. mbina says:

    Have never come accross an advert ya bank teller vacancies ku NBM and yet new tellers just flocking in mkumadabwa kuti kodi izi zikuchoka kuti? No wonder such is a service they offer, nzongotoledwa mu nsewu mu.

  19. Nyau Sinthabwala Dala says:

    This is a very good discussion topic, Charles where those of us that are in the diaspora can share some knowledge with you guys working in Malawi about how business has to be conducted if indeed we are serious to lift ourselves out of poverty. We are talking about encouraging good work manners.

    Think of what happens when you shop at PTC. You will find managers are just standing or just sitting in their offices reading the Nation, without feeling bothered to open up another till and jump on it to quickly help those struggling checkout girls, quickly clear those long ques.

  20. Nanariwa says:

    ma bank anali kale, anthu ngati enafe tinagwirako mu bank u were not forced to smile but it was
    z automatic smile when u see a customer coming because that was part of our job, but when these young people came in with technology in use ooh! my God when u arrive at the counter it is as if u want to beg some money frm tge teller. she/he will look at u as if u r gule wamkulu kukudabwa nkhope yake itasinthilatu when u present ur chq she/he will look at ur face as if uli ndi mamina eeish children of today ambuye adziwakhululukira ndithu

  21. Gavanala says:

    Ifetu nde kuno NBS bank ikutivetsa kuwawa heavy.Here in Chintheche we only hv mobile banks and one of them is NBS which comes every Monday.this other Monday I decided to go and withdraw my hard earned money bt unfortunately network was down.nde sinanga bank yobwera kamodzi pa wik the qui wz just too long and ambiri anali alimi komaso a xul yochepa.instead of kulongosola bwnobwno za network this other officer who happened to be a driver was lyk ‘amene tinamupangira check balance ndiyekhayo yemwe atatenge ndrama enanu chokani pa mzere’.so pple were confused cz they checked on their phones and were sure of the balance in their accounts.ndetu anthu anakwiya cz azathu a bank sanafotokoze bwinobwno kuti izi zikutathauza chani.and while pple were stl shouting at NBS officers,this other teller shouted on top of her voice ‘anthu inu musatibowe mwamva ifetu sitikanabwera kuno cz Galimoto yathu yationongekera panjira and we had to hire a vehicle kuti tibwere,anthu osayamika inu ndipo next wik sitingadzabwereso kuno’.these words angered us cz we were wondering kuti ndekuti ama bank timachita kuwakakamiza kuti azibwera.rily bankers nids to learn kulemekeza ma customer especially female tellers eish.

  22. Youth League Chairman: Kawale 1 market says:

    Very unfortunate indeed. Customer interface is a very important facet of customer relationship mgt. There are several reasons why this is happening some of which are:
    1. Recruitment: when nepotism and cronyism displace meritocracy, customer interface personnel becomes rubbish. Standard Bank and Airtel head offices in Lilongwe are a perfect example – lots of good looking young women who are hardly cognizant as to what their position demands.
    2. Capacity development and inclusivity: How many of these banks invite low level staff to strategic level forums where customer service issues are discussed? Not entire meetings, but at least portions which relate to their line of duty. I have seen so many standard Bank clients nearly exchange blows with security guards (relating to parking issues) at the banks City Centre branch. Are these guards given a rudimentary course in customer handling?
    3. Lack of serious competitive players in Malawi’s banking sector: this is perhaps the biggest source of arrogance and disrespect for customers. There is an oligopolistic structure with four major players. If the smaller banks were clever enough, they would have exploited, the big brothers weaknesses, came up with customer centric/responsive propositions, and improve their market share. Or may be we need Barclays/stanchart/absa to shake up these sleeping local banks who hardly conduct market research – a blatant sign that they don’t care about consumer preference and mostly rely on gut feeling for managerial decisions.

    I once had my laptop bag stolen right inside standard Bank lilongwe branch. The first two bank employees I approached simply weren’t interested to help me. The third one, just told me the CCTV cameras were only meant to cover the tellers – not banking hall clients! She then said sorry and hurriedly turned to other clients. There was total lack of empathy in my loss.

    Lastly, it’s not only banks which have these problems. Last month I went to JSI Deliver offices in Lilongwe for a work assignment. I met a cold faced receptionist who did not greet me and seemed focused on her desktop computer than assisting me. When I explained what I wanted, she quickly dealt with me when I knew she was far from the right person to assist me. As I angrily drove off, one senior staff member saw my car from his office upstairs, gave me a call and rushed downstairs and to the car park to see us. He is the one who assisted me.

  23. Khumayo says:

    I have learnt the hard way that it is good to give credit to those who deserve it while they can receive it. I want to make it clear. You are one of the most gifted writers, Charles. Congratulations for ‘letting it fall off your wall’. Keep digging more. Maybe tingaone kusintha. Malawi has been in deep slumber for too long. A lot of systems need a serious shake up. If nobody talks about them, nothing will change. Use your talent and influence change. Sadly, there will be those who will be criticizing you just to protect their selfish interests. They will try hard to demoralize you, or even threaten you. Just ignore them. Be assured there are millions of Malawians praying for people like you to speak for them. With you all the way as the father of all blessings give you more wisdom.

  24. Aublic says:

    Almost All Influencial Firms In Malawi From Media, Bank, Network Service Providers Etc. I Have Emailed Many News Papers And Web Feeds About Issues Affecting Our Economy To Adpot Least Cost Solutions And Orient Malawi Citizens About It But They Despised My Ideas By Not Publishing The Articles. In Return Airtel And Tnm They Abuse The Customers Right By Offering Internet And Voice Tarrifs That Are Not Regulated Or Proved. For Istant You Buy A 1GB Internet Bundle It Will Last Even Before You Reach Your Usage I Have The Proofs. I Developed A Concept Beyond Mpamba And Airtel Money To Allow The Third Population Of Less Previlaged People Who Earn Low As K100 A Day To Liquidate That By Toping Up Into Mobile Account Registered Easily On Their Mobile Phones By Dialing Shortcodes Just As We Registered With Tnm Moyo Cover. But They Blocked Me. Atms And Banks Are Mostly Down But To Provide Them A Proved Uptime Solutions Working Some Where They Turn It Down Yet They Want Us To Understand While We Waste Time Waiting On Lines

  25. He says:

    I can extend this to MRA. Two weeks ago I sent my forms to pay a certain tax at Lilongwe office. The officer said he needed his boss to calculate the amount. I waited till closing time nothing was done. I have followed up several times and he still doesn’t have the calculation.
    Now I am wondering, who needs the tax? Is it MRA/Govt or myself.
    The minister of finance is failing to balance the budget, yet his officers are so lazy to collect tax!

  26. sir bentby says:

    true to the bottom, even some companies and shops

  27. Ben Ntata says:

    In my case I have had to maintain my savings at National Bank, just to please God, because they are a Malawian owned bank. Otherwise their service leaves a lot be desired.

    They largely lack communication abilities with their customers. You wonder in this age when electronic forms of communication have made it easy for business to keep in touch with their customers, our Bwana’s and Dona’s at NB can’t seem to see that window of opportunity at all.

    Imagine I have never seen any communication yotitsatsa any of their newer products ever since I joined them via an email.

    And at a time when information technologists are striving for simplicity in information presentation to remove clatter (see windows 10 interface), NB bank website is full of eye ‘thobwing’ writings – kuti iii! Kodi amafuna kuyikapo ma disco lights pa web page imeneyi?

    Nevertheless, l am not encouraging anyone to leave NB, but that we save our little monies there while talking and talking till one day we get a Lloyd’s TSB kind like banking service, but with NB in Malawi.

  28. Ambele says:

    Charles, unali kuti iwe munthu ? You talk of the banks, sh sh sh I have been to
    standard bank City Centre and I was treated like a thief, I went to Standard Bank
    Lilongwe the Teller or whatever she is at the enquires looked at me as if I am in a wrong bank, I went to Cross Standard there at least I was greeted and assisted in good time.
    BANKS please train or teach your staff respect amafulumila akaona azungu

  29. skul baks says:

    a gud piece about our banks….one issue that baffles me is that they hav long queues but no toilets let alone urinals yet most of them offer cold water

  30. banker says:

    Thats why i love INDEbank! Its different. But wheww!!!…its big swallowed into the tummy of the big elephant, National Bank. They are selling my bank. They are buying my bank. I only hope that the few fine fish will change the many rotten fish. Indebank employees, when you get into those blue buildings, teach them that green beatful way of banking. I need to see that green customer service in those blue buildings in few years. Yes, you can make!!. Some ppo led the big bank into the state it is in the customers minds. Some ppo can lead it into a nice bank. Those ‘some people’ can be you…no no no……..MUST be you!!!!

  31. banker says:

    I feel your frustration bwana. Allow me to correct one exergeration in your coment; for three days away to Jo’burg and any country, you will be allowed to get USD1,500.00. Thus USD 500 per day. With valid reasons, you may get up to USD 3000.00 for 3 days. Otherwise, its USD500 per day for a maxmum of 20 days translating to a very maxmum of USD10,000.00 at a time , ofcourse subject to proof of travel. So there is nothing like USD5000 for a 3day holiday in Jo’berg. Are these allocations enough?…why should the bank limit me on how i want to spend money?…good questions!. Let me say here again that just like travel allowances, maintainance allowances for those living abroad have there own aplicable limits. …but why and how does std bank set these ‘senseless’ limits which anger customers like you sir?…wait a minute!!..pull the triger but turn the barell. You are shooting a wrong culprit. Turn the gun unto The RBM. They set all these limits!!!. We live in a controlled econmy where forex us much controlled. Yes they told you its a free economy but let me tell you, there is a full forex controll department CONTROLLING the FREE economy!. Blame the comercial banks on all other things, but on this one, you can feel sorry for them. They too need to sell you limitless forex to get more commissions!! Its the regulator. Its RBM. Remember how regulators ‘disturb’ your business???

  32. vyakuchitika says:

    Tired with yaviyavi akuchitika in our banks. So unfriendly/ flightening tellers. Eish! You’ve spoken my mind Charles.

  33. moya says:

    Nyasatimes this is a good start , have him full time writing articles for you, he is the remaining top cream of journalists m.r simango

  34. Let Us Pray says:

    Ma Bank This is your opportunity to pick some sense out of what these Men of God are talking about you. Don’t just sit ndwii apa!! Wake up men. When we come to you does not mean we are looking for some favours but we are simply looking for your services which you ably advertise. Kaya mumamva anthu inu kaya. Eshii!!! I feel like am wasting my time talking to people who will never change until Jesus comes.

    Well done Charles to bring this issue up. God Bless You!

  35. paulos banda says:

    Barloworld Equipment is the same.

  36. MANYUCHI says:

    soooooooooooooooooooo true!!

  37. ujeni says:

    I also have issues with one Statutory, I email them but they don’t reply to my emails, I call them by phones , they don’t bother to answer sometimes they do sometimes they just leave you on hold for ever. Yet I want to be their customer. Malawians are some out of space species not from this civilised planet earth.

  38. mphini za mutchafu says:

    Mr mailosi standard bank mwainamizira they are a very good bank ngongole sachedwetsa and all their services are excellent

  39. Solo says:

    Ma bankers a ku Malawi amenewo, they don’t invest in customer care. zokuti first impression matters samazidziwa, when you call and they say that they will call you back just forget it some even have the audacity to say muyimbenso and yet it is them asking for more time to give you feedback or service you are looking for. Now you wonder why CDH is where it is now – we don’t know it at all!!!

    Only banks that one feels appreciated are NBS and first merchant Bank though amaoneka achimidzi koma customer care yokha amaitha, Standard and National Bank nde chiletso amakhala ngati akukakamizidwa ntchito

  40. TD says:

    Customer care by Malawian banks is miles away

  41. Peter Nangwale says:

    What about quee in these banks

  42. Viva says:

    Theres this whole thing in Malawi Banks of asking customers to wait as they verify whatever and then they call you so loudly ‘ A Kamaaangaaa’ A Kamangaaaa’ I only see it in Malawi.. Please tell me where else it happens in the world

  43. Inhumane Rights Activist says:

    Nyasatimes, i applaud you for introducing this column. Brilliant idea! Hundreds of Malawians post issues that are relevant to our country but we all cannot be friends on our respective faceboook pages to share such posts. For you to come up with this, I say congratulations 101% Edgar and Thom.

    As for Charles Simango. Very critical observation. kudos. I hope all Malawian based banks read this. NBS is even more pathetic. They are lagging behind with technology. Can you believe that NBS has an “inactive internet banking?” For a couple of years their internet banking service has been suspended due to insider fraud. To this day, one cannot transact anything by him/herself online. What I do not understand it is that they have the whole IT department which is expected to be well trained to counter such cyber-crimininal activities. Bola Village banking ndithu kungosunga pansi pamtondo.

    What I also find even more bewildering is that we are charged by NBS and probably other banks in Malawi for using the ATM when in fact all the world, and I will cite the example of the United States, the UK and South Africa as an example, you are charged for banking hall activities such as withdrawals and deposits. In most US banks, only three banking hall visits per month are free, over that you are charged. This then leads to less queues than the congestion we see in our Malawian banks like NBS and the others. What I find even more strange is most of the banking staff have travelled or even been trained in such developed economies. Why they don’t learn and impart such innovations in our country it beggars belief.

    What a shame! NBS your “UNCARING” Bank.

  44. Chambang'ondo says:

    I think some of these banks don’t have time to employ the right people. With today’s life of employing nephews, wanders will not end. We have a certain lady very shot in stature at OIBM Lilongwe head office…..koma eish!!! Ndi smoke.

  45. killZwelithiniEdwardZuma says:

    You nailed it Charles. If they are not only good for turning cheques into cash money, the banks are no good either way!

  46. I just like it .I think I can serve my customers better than I do after reading this article. Thank you Charles.

  47. Victor Jumbo says:

    Cool stuff. I liked reading your article. I am with you all the way and hopefully I will be reading many more of yours to come.
    Victor Jumbo, UK.

  48. truevoter says:

    suja kale munkati aMboma ndiye mbuzi

  49. onele says:


  50. james mailosi says:

    Well put Charles,
    I have had similar experiences but with standard bank, you know when the bank deals with you like they are doing you a favour, all the while you are not going there for a loan, or is your account overdrawn, but just want to send some £1,000 to a relative who is trying to do some studying.

    You are trying to convince the bank that what is needed is £1,000, and they tell you that the limit is $1,000 per month! You tell them that but the UK home office puts a minimum average living expense for the cheapest town in the UK at £820/month. They tell you to bring all manner of evidence, letter from the school, letter from his landlord, proof of his student status etc. After all that, they still tell you sorry, maximum is $1,000/month!
    Funny enough, when I am going for a weekend trip from LL to Joburg, I m entitle to $5,000! For a 3 day stay in the RSA?!

    Chonsechotu, you want to convert your money, not their money! There must be a better way surely.

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