The House of Representatives on Thursday asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to immediately suspend the implementation of the new aspect of the cashless policy on deposits which has taken effect today.
The lawmakers took the resolution after adopting a motion brought under matters of urgent national importance by hon, Benjamin Kalu.
They also mandated its Committee on Banking and Currency to interface with the CBN “to 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 and to report back to the House within 4 weeks”.
While introducing the motion earlier, the Abia lawmaker from Abia state, said he was concerned that the Central Bank of Nigeria “did not consider the people as the as prime, important and in deed the centre piece of policy-making, even as Section 14(2)(b) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (As Altered) provides for the security and welfare of the people as the primary purpose of government”.
He said, “The implementation of cashless policy on withdrawals has negative impacts on micro, mini, small, and medium 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.”
“While the impact of the cashless policy on withdrawals is still starring us all in our faces as well as other numerous burdensome charges by Nigerian Money Deposit Banks heavily impacting on businesses, the Central Bank of Nigeria deemed it necessary to impose the implementation of cashless policy on deposits, without due consultations with all shades of stakeholder who will be impacted by the policy.
“This overbearing burden aimed at closing down majority of micro, mini, small and medium businesses in Nigeria is also aimed at enriching Nigerian Money Deposit Banks owned by a privileged few, without any known financial contribution to the consolidated revenue fund of the federation.”
It will be recalled that the CBN on Wednesday announced certain cash deposits and withdrawals from individual bank accounts are to attract additional charges.
According to a circular to all deposit money bank (DMBs), the Director, Payments System Management Department at the CBN, Sam Okojere, henceforth 3 per cent processing fees would be paid for withdrawals and 2 per cent for deposits of amounts above N500,000 for individual accounts while corporate accounts will attract 5 per cent processing fees for withdrawals and 3 per cent processing fee for lodgments above N3m.