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Sterling Bank “Agege Bread” Easter Message Receives Heavy Knocks

“Good Sterling Bank apologised. But they shouldn’t have said, ‘let him who has never sinned throw the first stone’. Sounds defiant”

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Sterling Bank Agege Bread quote
Sterling Bank Agege Bread quote

Sterling Bank Plc., has come under heavy criticism over the contents of its message to customers celebrating Easter; a Christian festival commemorating the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

The content by Sterling Bank reads: “Like Agege Bread, He Rose. Happy Easter”

Mma Ijele Chikwelu believes the brand was trying to be comical with the concept, but to Obinna ‘bank’ Nwaorgu, “This is utterly disgusting, tasteless and almost seems to me like a deliberate (sic) thing…. This is classless”.

Tola Arinola, detests the message too. In her post, Tola highlighted the need to communicate to the customers in unambiguous manner.

“Below is the message Sterling Bank Plc sent to customers by email. For those not in the know, Agege bread is popular Nigerian bread well loved by many. Sterling Bank decides to send an Easter message to its customers. In doing so decide to compare Jesus Christ to a loaf of bread.

“On the face of it let’s compare two well-loved thing/personality and have a play on words, right?

“WRONG! No Christian, even the ones that attend church just twice a year, would ever compare our risen Lord with bread.

“In communicating with customers you need to communicate in their language not in yours by trying to make yourself look cool or woke or whatever the term is these days.

“The task was simple, send a greeting to customers for Easter and they failed woefully generating complaints instead. Who approved the wording? The concept? Who thought this was cool & would make our Christian customers happy that we were thinking about them this Easter?

“Personally if I had an account with Sterling Bank, I will vote with my legs and move to another bank. Not suggesting that this makes them a bad Bank but it’s important that actions have consequences.

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Rev’d Femi Babajide wrote: “#Take it down NOW! #SterlingBank. I’m a graphic artist and creative designer; I understood the concepts of content creation and the implications of illustrative media. The content and concept used by Sterling bank Plc to promote her brand and commemorate ’Easter’ is an unfortunate publicity error and it will hurt the establishment for a longtime.

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Sterling Bank Agege Bread quote

“This is advert taken too far, very needless and provocative content, perceived to be intentionally created to slight the very core of Christian faith, sadly by a bank that had enjoyed patronage by several loyal Christian depositor including my humbly self. It’s an embarrassment to all Christians in Nigeria.

“If considered as an honest error by the marketing team, the insensitivity of the top management to the implications of misrepresentation of the Risen Christ and equating the ‘rise’ with some ‘Agege-bread’ is a laughable sarcasm but a slight on the faith of Christianity as a religion.

“To dare to adapt such blasphemy and publish it on social media, sending such ridiculous content by e-mail to depositors is a tough display of insensitivity and lack of civility, to ignore the implications of this act, is equally a daring status that most loyal patrons of the bank will need to respond to.

“Personally, I will request #SterlingBank to take it down NOW, with a public apology by the establishment to all Christians globally for such ridiculous publicity and unethical content, it is unfortunate that such would not be done to discredit the sanctity of any other religion and not be violently contested.

“I humbly request that all Christians reading this should make it first a matter of prayer concern and if you can, raise uproar to God that He will shield the truth of resurrection from this ridicule because this is an assault to the core of our faith.

“Jesus is Risen and I declare NOT as an AGEGE BREAD. He lives within my heart!”

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Sterling Bank deleted the post and offered apology:

https://twitter.com/Sterling_Bankng/status/1515685516624154636

But some customers are still furious over bank’s gaffe!

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“Good Sterling Bank apologised. But they shouldn’t have said, ‘let him who has never sinned throw the first stone’. Sounds defiant”, Lolu Akinwunmi LA wrote.

One of the customers who identified as Blessing Otagbo has even vowed to close her account of 12 years with Sterling Bank:

Post: “God is my witness, even if I have to be the only customer to do this, though insignificant to their growth, I will still do it. I will close down my account of over 12 years with Sterling Bank Plc  as soon as I returned from vacation to my home land VisitOsoso .

“@Sterling bank, your apology is not accepted because your derogatory Easter wishes that equate the rising of Christ to that of Agege bread was well thought out. It was funny to you and your unreasonable team of copywriter from the pit of hell.

“You will definitely have your lunch well served in no distance time….”

Commenting on the Sterling Bank’s advert, Mr. Chido Nwakanma, President, International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), Africa, said that the Bank should remove its corporate communications team.

“Unless they are equally complicit, the Management of Sterling Bank should clear its Corporate Comms (sic) team on Tuesday. Everyone involved in preparing and placing that obnoxious ad that pokes noxious fingers into the eyes of all Christians in Nigeria should not be involved in communications one day extra.

“Have you seen the obnoxious and insulting ad? A corporate entity such as Sterling Bank signs off on an ad that compares the basis of the Christian faith to Agege Bread. It is the height of idiocy! It is an offensive joke.

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“The resurrection of Christ is the foundation of our faith as Christians. Blaze comparisons in the name of creativity are offensive.

“Then Sterling Bank worsens the offence by offering a non-apology. The uninformed copy asks us to “Forgive in the Spirit of Easter” but confirms they are not sorry. It states, “Let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone”. Foolishness!

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“For our recent errors, we sincerely apologize. We humbly celebrate his resurrection, the defeat of death and the hope of salvation”.

(Please prefer “apologise” with an S for UK English in Nigeria!) Which dullards did this? Is it because Christians have few bomb-throwers and arsonists?

“Note that it would be compounding the offence to reproduce the offensive ad.

“Remember that Sterling Bank committed a similar offence in 2018 with its “In shooting for the moon, men become stars” ad. It similarly apologised. Is that the Sterling Bank tradition? Put two feet in the mouth and then say sorry? Not good at all.

“APCON should check. Did the Advertising Standards Panel approve this ad?” he queried.

Sterling Bank was not the only bank that sent our Easter greetings to the customers. However, others did not generate the controversy that trailed the bank’s choice of concept and words.

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  1. Pingback: Sterling Bank “Agege Bread” Easter Message Receives Heavy Knocks – TechEconomy.ng – TechEconomy.ng – Holiday Helper

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