The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) recently announced a new policy that mandates deposit money banks and other financial institutions to ensure that over-the-counter cash withdrawals by individuals and corporate entities do not exceed N100, 000 and N500, 000 respectively per week.
Reactions have since trailed the development as Nigerians didn’t fail to express their views on what they perceive of the policies.
On the one hand are Nigerians who welcomed the development, hoping that the policy which CBN claims are in line with its cashless policy will encourage more Nigerians to use alternative channels to carry out their banking transactions.
On the other hand, some Nigerians have criticized the policy, saying that it will translate to a negative effect on daily businesses.
Towards a cashless economy: Some Nigerians credit the CBN for coming up with such a policy at a time when the election is fast approaching and lots of criminal activities are expected to go on.
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- Kalu Aja, a financial expert feels that the CBN’s actions on the Naira redesigning and limited cash withdrawals are fine as long as POS, mobile money, and other noncash transactions are offered at reduced prices. He, however, suggests that other options; such as writing a cheque, transfer, or mobile banking – which are trackable, should be utilized.
If you need more naira to do a transaction
1. Write a check
3. Mobile Banking
Point is these options are trackable.
Why do you need N100m cash that can’t be tracked?
To do what ?
— Kalu Aja (@FinPlanKaluAja1) December 6, 2022
Doctor Penking said the policy will put a hold on wanton display of phantom wealth as transfers will now be a preferable option.
The new CBN policy will put a hold to wanton display of phantom wealth like what we witnessed at Obi Cubana’s mother’s burial. If you want to gift somebody money at their event, transfer it into their bank account. Buhari’s government started bad but it’s landing well.
— Doctör Penking™ (@drpenking) December 7, 2022
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Wole Oluyemi opines that the move is tilted towards attaining a cashless society, especially in cities as is done in advanced countries.
In one of the most cashless societies in the world, the DAILY withdrawal limit is between $300 and $500 per day.
The new CBN limits of N100k per day might encourage more people (especially outside of Lagos, PHC & Abuja) to keep more transactions away from the banking system.
— Wolé Olúyemí (@WoleOluyemiCo) December 7, 2022
Curbing criminality: In other social media platforms, Misterone explained that the policy will stop those who are thinking of making brisk business by collecting old notes from criminals at high rates than going to the ATM to withdraw new notes.
He said, “When the redesigned naira notes come out, some people will start selling it. To prevent or restrict this to the barest minimum, the CBN decided to implement this policy. Also, note that denominations above N200 will not be inside an ATM machine. Therefore for those who are thinking of making brisk business by collecting old notes from criminals at high rates than going to the ATM to withdraw new notes, sorry is your middle name.”
Push for eNaira: Meanwhile, some believe that the development is geared towards improving the acceptance and usage of eNaira in the country.
Olumide Adesina said the limits set by the CBN are also part of a broader push to encourage the use of the eNaira.
The limits set by the CBN are also part of a broader push to encourage the use of the #eNaira
— Olumide Adesina (@TokunboAdesina) December 7, 2022
In his opinion, David Hundeyin said the essence of the policy is to tax cash transactions.
The entire point of this CBN policy is not any cashless kinikan – even Emefiele is not dumb enough to believe that a country of 180 million+ people that generates less than 5,000MW of electricity can go “cashless.”
The point is to tax cash transactions like transfers are taxed.
— David Hundeyin (@DavidHundeyin) December 7, 2022
Another perspective: on the other hand, some Nigerians opine that the development is believed to hold lots of harm more than good.
- Abiyos Roni thinks the policy will cripple a lot of SMEs, as lots of people are yet to adapt. He said, “The CBN cashless policy will crippled a lot of SMEs, and millions of people will lose their savings. I pity old people who are not wise enough in cashless.”
The CBN cashless policy will crippled a lot of SMEs, millions of people will lose their savings. I pity old people who are not wise enough in cashless.
— Abiyos Roni ©️ (@AbbaM_Abiyos) December 6, 2022
A user identified as Matermaestro of social media doesn’t believe the policy would stay for long.
He said, “A substantial part of this largely ridiculous policy will be reversed by the next administration. I wonder why most people are beating themselves up. I am laughing here because I am more than a hundred percent sure that it won’t last more than six months.