News Column

Monotechnic Seeks Halt of N65 ATM Charges, Public Hearing On N50 Stamp Receipts

August 26, 2014

Tope Templer Olaiya

THE School of Banking Honours (SBH) has sent a petition to the Senate Committee on Public Petitions urging the National Assembly to halt the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) directive to banks to reactive the N65 Automated Teller Machine (ATM) charges beginning from September 1, 2014.

At a press briefing held in Lagos yesterday, Project Consultant/Rector, SBH, 'Tola Adekoya, said until the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement system Plc (NIBSS) publicly accounts for the N50 stamp proceeds on e-Banking receipts into the federation account, the N65 ATM charges should be suspended, as it would amount to the exploitation of the CBN's cashless policy.

"The NIBSS has since January 2013 been appointed official sweeping firm on e-Banking receipts. It later increased its own charge from N35 to N105 (300 per cent) despite its financial inclusion in the N50 stamp duty obligation. Based on reported growth in the NIBSS electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT), volume of e-Banking receipts is estimated at 50 billion per annum, which at N50 gives about N2.5 trillion postal revenue, that has been converted by NIBSS away from the federation account."

SBH is an Innovation Enterprise Institution (IEI) accredited by National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) to drive the country's policy on banking skills and entrepreneurship studies.

The institution had been at the forefront of enforcing the Stamp Duty Act 2004 and NIPOST Act 2004, while implementing the N50 stamping policy on all banking transaction receipts in form of electronic money transfers and manual banking tellers with values of N1,000 and above, through the instrument of a Masters Services Agreement granted it by the Nigerian Postal Services (NIPOST).

Under the arrangement, SBH as the project consultant is expected to create over 300,000 jobs and rollout with an immediate engagement of 100,000 young graduates on its 'em-Bankers' programme. Also, ex-bankers that were recently disengaged from the banking industry would be absorbed to lead the re-skilling of young em-Bankers in a "shadow-banking" model across the country.

However, several months after the agreement between NIPOST and SBH was signed, the project take-off has been delayed by non-release of a circular by the CBN to back-up its approval letters to SBH, as Master Services Agent of NIPOST, for all banks and other financial institutions to comply with the Stamp Duties Act, which stipulates in Section 89(2) that "every receipt given by any person in acknowledgement of goods purchased or services rendered should be denoted by an adhesive postage stamp worth N50 issued by NIPOST."

According to Adekoya, while the compliance circular by the CBN to the banks is being awaited, the federation account is deliberately being denied an annual injection of over N2 trillion since the said amount is being deducted by NIBSS on all e-Banking transactions.

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Source: AllAfrica

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