Nigerians have continued to lament over the cashless policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria which impose charges on deposits and withdrawals on N500,000 and above with the aim of embarking on the nationwide implementation of the cashless policy
While some have said the initiative would aid the implementation of the cashless policy in Nigeria, some have described it as a way of extorting Nigerians.
The Registrar, Chartered Institute of Finance and Control of Nigeria, Mr Godwin Eohoi, called for a downward review of the charges to 0.5 per cent for individuals and 1.5 per cent for corporate organisations. He said bank customers were already suffering the burden of various charges from DMBs for carrying out various banking transactions.
He gave some of the charges as card maintenance fee, Automated Teller Machine withdrawal charge, stamp duty, Commission on Turnover and SMS alerts. Eohoi said with all these charges, it would be unfair for the apex bank to impose additional charges on cash withdrawal and deposit in a bid to promote cashless economy.
Dr. Joe Abah, Country Director of DAI, an international development company via tweet said @DrJoeAbah “Our Central Bank still thinks we are in the military era. If, for whatever reason, you are going to introduce charges for deposits, will you just issue a circular? No explanation? No justification? No sensitization? You just issue a circular and call it cashless policy?”
Gbemile Oluwatosin, a Photo journalist described the policy as a policy for the rich because he considered it is only the rich that would have such amount of money and as a result be affected by the policy.
The CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, has however said there is no going back on the implementation of the cashless policy in line with its mandate to ensure an efficient payment system.
Emefiele said that contrary to claims in some quarters that many Nigerians would suffer the negative impact of the policy, only about five to ten per of bank customers would be affected. He said if the Nigerian economy is to compete effectively with those of developed countries, then a payment system that encourages the use of other non-cash channel was desirable.