The chief of the Cowessess First Nation says he was never very pleased with the services provided by Affinity Credit Union and is unconcerned with the financial institution’s decision to leave the community.

Terrence Lavallee says Affinity never offered more than limited services to Cowessess.

“They were hit and miss,” he says. “And they’re closing at three o’clock in the afternoon. Offices don’t close until 4:30. The people were having to be given time off to do their banking – it was just a sham product that they were trying to push down on us.”

The credit union will close its branch on the reserve on Aug. 15 and transfer accounts to its Broadview branch about 15 kilometers away.

Affinity says it made this decision because it was unable to secure a multi-year lease with the Cowessess band.

However, Lavallee says the credit union had six months to put together a new lease and the First Nation will now look for another financial institution to fill the existing space.