CBN Clarifies Fees Attached to Cashless Policy After House of Rep Agrees on Motion to Suspend Implementation

REPS suspend cashless policy
Nigerian legislators are considering a social media bill to regulate internet conversations…

After recently releasing a circular that authorised banks to charge additional fees on deposits and withdrawals starting from N500,000, the Central Bank has released a tweet clarifying the fees attached to the policy.

According to CBN, the deposit charges have no effect on sums below or equal to N500,000. However, if someone deposits or withdraws say a sum of N520,000, the charges will only apply to N20,000.

The extra charges came as part of CBN’s strategy to enforce a cashless policy in the country. We reported earlier that according to the circular, the policy would have taken effect on September 18.

CBN’s clarification is coming on the heels of a suspension call by the House of Reps after Hon. Benjamin Kalu made a motion concerning the cashless policy.

In the motion which was unanimously agreed to during the plenary on Thursday, Mr Benjamin Kalu, Chairman of the House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, called for the suspension of the cashless policy.

Hon. Benjamin Okezie Kalu

The House Committee on Banking and Currency has also been asked to confer with the CBN and “ascertain the propriety, relevance and the actual need for the implementation of that aspect of the cashless policy at this time, considering the prevailing economic situation of the country.”

A report is expected to be made back to the House within four weeks.

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While moving the motion for the suspension, Kalu expressed his concerns that the cashless policy would be a burden on small and medium scale businesses in the country. He added that the policy would serve to drive more Nigerians into poverty.

“The House is deeply worried that the implementation of cashless policy on withdrawals has negative impacts on micro, mini, small and medium scale enterprises, which are clearly the engine room for growth of the economy and employment generation, thereby throwing many of them out of business and sending more Nigerians into poverty, forcing more traders and micro investors to carry cash about with its attendant security challenges.”

Benjamin Kalu

According to Benjamin Kalu, financial policies should be put in place with the primary aim of reducing cost and making banking transactions easier for Nigerians.

The CBN, however, stresses that the intended charges will have no effect on transactions made via e-banking, only on cash-based transactions. This is part of its efforts to encourage more electronic banking with its attendant advantages.

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