By Elohor Igbru, Abuja
The governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele has bowed to outcry from Nigerians over the bank’s controversial new cash withdrawal policy.
The policy which came on the heels of the new naira redesign order by the CBN had limited the weekly withdrawal of cash by individuals to N100,000 and for corporate organisations N500,000 per week.
However in a new circular, the bank said it is increasing the weekly limits to N500,000 and N5 million for individuals and corporate organisations across all channels respectively.
The circular signed by the Director of Banking Supervision Department, Haruna Mustafa, effectively put a stop to the former policy which had generated uproar among Nigerians including the National Assembly.
However, the CBN said it has reviewed upwards the cash limits based on feedback from stakeholders.
CBN: “The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) hereby makes the following reviews: (1) the maximum weekly limit for cash withdrawal across all channels by individuals and corporate organisations shall be N500,000.00 and N5,000,000.00 respectively.
“2. In compelling circumstances where cash withdrawal above the limits in (1) is required for legitimate purposes, such requests shall be subject to a
processing fee of 3 percent and 5 percent for individuals and corporate organisations, respectively.
“Further to (2) above, the financial institution shall obtain the following information from the customer, at the minimum, and upload same on the CBN portal created for the purpose: valid means of identification of the payee (national ID, international passport, or driver’s license), bank verification number (BVN) of the payee, tax identification number (TIN) of both the payee and the payer, and an approval in writing by the MD/CEO of the financial institution authorising the withdrawal.
“Third party cheques above N100,000 shall not be eligible for payment over-the-counter, while the extant limit of N10 million on clearing cheques still subsist.”
“Compliance with extant AML/CFT regulations relating to KYC, ongoing customer due diligence and suspicious transaction reporting etc. is required in all circumstances,” it added.
“Customers should be encouraged to use alternative channels (internet banking, mobile banking apps, USSD, cards/POS, eNaira, etc.) to conduct their banking transactions.
The apex bank said it recognises the vital role that cash plays in supporting underserved and rural communities and would ensure an inclusive approach as it implements the transition to a more cashless society.
“All banks and OFls are to note that aiding and abetting the circumvention of this policy will attract severe sanctions,” CBN said.