A non-governmental organization, the Association of Professionals for Promotion of Civic Values (APPOCV) released a statement on Thursday, September 26, cautioning the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) over the mandate surrounding the cashless policy.
The statement signed by the Executive Secretary, APPOCV, Ayo Murtala, “notes with concern, the recent attempt by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to jig some of the rules around the Cashless policy of the Government.”
The NGO further described the directive as an “uncoordinated commitment to the well-conceived cashless policy.
“We believe that CBN may not have taken adequate time in understanding the immediate needs of the citizenry in order to determine the best course of action to take on this matter.”
APPOCV further explained the economic and socio-cultural effects whilst educating the populace on the merits of the policy.
“We reckon this is an initiative that should be marketing-driven to allow for traction from the people, in adopting cashless transactions.
“Like in any other marketing endeavour, awareness and education on the benefits of a cashless economy need to be provided in the major languages and the people should be given all options available, in order to ensure a seamless transition.
“We suggest that the CBN and banks should spend on delivering this education and awareness to the people.
“Banks should incentivise cashless transactions; to attract new users and the adoption of POS as a means of payment.”
The statement also bemoaned the ripple effects of the policy on “businesses such as supermarket chains, fast-food chains, transport companies and other private businesses still record heavy cash-based transactions.
“This further amounts to shortchanging businesses and taxing or reaping from their profits.
“Whilst some businesses are able to transfer these charges to the customers in their pricing; it is deepening the hardship along the value chains.”
The body exhorted the “CBN should be more interested in the interest and protection of the customers rather than penalising the same customers they are meant to protect.”
However, APPOCV commended the efforts of the Government; especially the commitment of the CBN to building a cashless society.
The NGO also “urge restraint in introducing policies or practices that may seem to have an immediate gain, but goes ahead to create far more problems and burden for the average Nigerian.”
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