The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says it would do everything possible to stop all charges on PoS transactions as part of measures to cushion the effects of the current scarcity of the naira. The Governor of the apex bank, Godwin Emefiele, stated this at a special media briefing on the new naira notes, on Friday, in Lagos.
While urging banks to stop the charges on PoS, the CBN Governor said he would also meet with telecom companies to see how every cost attached to PoS can be stopped, at least, for now. He said:
- "I am going to be calling a meeting with the banks this evening or by tomorrow, if those charges go to or those charges have been charged through the bank, we are going to have an arrangement with even telcos to see how those charges can actually at this time be stopped.
- "Those charges at this time should be stopped. So, if we know whatever you are making that you’re not making because we stopped it, we can collect it somewhere and look for a way to pay you.
- "But we don’t want you to continue to create pain on those who want to use alternative channels when they cannot have cash in their pocket."
- "We will go into this later this night or even tomorrow, we’re going to call a meeting of both the banks and the mobile networks; at this time nobody should be charged, if you are charged, we will need to know about it.
- "But we would want this service to continue to be offered. Whatever it is in terms of volume and number that you have carried out. We will look for away to pay you your money,” he added.
The CBN Governor also appealed to Nigerians to show understanding adding that the redesigned notes would circulate and be accessible. He noted he was seeing the protests and arguments surrounding the difficulty citizens were facing in accessing the new notes.
Recall that the redesigned naira notes comprising N200, N500 and N1,000, came into use on Dec. 15, 2022, after they were unveiled by President Muhammadu Buhari on Nov. 23, 2022 in Abuja. The CBN had earlier fixed Jan. 31 as deadline for the collection of old naira notes, but later extended the time limit to Feb. 10. The CBN governor said the extension was to allow Nigerians that had naira legitimately earned and trapped, the opportunity to deposit their money for exchange.
However, since the extension Nigerians have been facing difficulty in getting cash as banks are not loading their ATMs and neither are they making cash available over the counter.