The House of Representatives has directed Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to suspend the implementation of the cashless policy on deposits and withdrawals above N500,000 by individuals and N3 million for corporate organizations.
The resolution followed the adoption of a motion sponsored by the chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Benjamin Kalu, titled “Need to suspend the implementation of the cashless policy on deposits by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.”
The House mandated the 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.
The Committee is except to report back to the House within four weeks for further legislative action.
While leading debate on the motion, Hon Kalu said that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) introduced a policy on cash-based transactions which imposed a cash handling charge on daily cash withdrawals that exceed N1,500,000 for individuals and $18,000,000 for corporate bodies in 2012.
He said that he was “aware that the policy on cash-based transactions (withdrawals) in banks, was aimed at reducing and not eliminating the amount of physical cash (coins and notes) circulating in the economy, and encouraging more electronic-based transactions (payments for goods, services, transfers, etc)”
He noted that the cash policy was introduced for a number of key reasons including the need to drive development and modernization of our payment system in line with Nigeria’ 5 vision 2020 goal of being amongst the top 20 economies by the year 2020, to reduce the cost of banking services (including cost of credit) and drive financial inclusion by providing more efficient transaction options and greater reach, inter alia.