Interest rates rose at a Limerick bank yesterday when two officials combined the colour and sound of their native customs.

Paulina Wysocka did dancing twirls in her traditional Polish dress as Nigerian colleague Ola Raji tapped beats on his bongo drum as part of a day of multicultural events.

Paulina, a business adviser at Bank of Ireland’s O’Connell St branch, said: “The last time I took out my Polish dress was when our daughter Helena was baptised in Poland earlier this year. It was great to be able to come to work this morning and show off the beauty of the Polish traditional dress which is worn on very special occasions.”

Ola, aged 47, an accountant with the bank’s regulatory reporting team in Dublin, came bearing his bongo drum dressed in Nigerian handmade robes and headwear.

Ola said: “I only wear my traditional robes when going to Christian service on Sundays with my wife, Toke and our children, Sumbo, Wisdom, Glory, Joseph, and Josh. My bongo is made of carved wood and goat skin.

“We had good fun in the bank here in Limerick today with Paulina doing elegant Polish dances to the sound of my bongo. The customers liked it and they all seemed happy despite the rain.”

Ola said it was a big change to be in the bank wearing his traditional Nigerian robes.

“When I go to work it is in a suit and tie,” he said. “This is a very pleasant change.

“I am busy at the moment doing my final accountancy exams.”

On Bedfored Row, crowds gathered to listen to Ola, joined by Hugo Mbunga on the piano.

Hugo, aged 38, from the Congo said: “Everybody seems to be enjoying our music. It’s good craic.”

David Idioh played the djembe, a native African instrument.

David, a member of the Limerick Gospel Choir, said: “We are having fun and the people are liking our Nigerian African beats.”


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