The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has clarified that account holders can still have access to cash transactions while the e-banking transactions would be restricted.
This clarification comes after claims by Deposit Money Banks (DMB) that there would be total restriction on accounts without Bank Verification Number (BVN), after the deadline today.
The BVN is an initiative of the CBN and the Bankers’ Committee, launched on February 14, 2014.
It is a unique identifier for each bank customer across the financial industry, making it possible to build and track customer financial history and activity.
The CBN had last year issued a directive to all banks to ensure that their customers register for BVN before June 30th, 2015, so as to protect all e-banking transactions from fraudulent attacks.
The apex bank has said there would be no extension of deadline and that enough time has been given to customers to enroll for the BVN.
On Monday, most banks visited by our correspondents in Lagos revealed long queues of customers in the banking halls rushing to enroll for the BVN before the deadline.
Before now, messages has been flying from Deposit Money Banks in the country warning customers about account restriction after the June 30 deadline.
A text message from one of the banks read: “dear customer, accounts without BVN will soon be restricted. Enroll for/submit your BVN at any branch from Monday to Saturday”.
There had been claims that 62 million bank accounts may face restriction for failure to register, the claim which Ibrahim Muazu, director, corporate communications department, CBN, said was an exaggeration.
He noted that many individuals and corporates do have more than one account and some in two deposit money banks, for example current, savings, domiciliary among others.
“Holders and a person requires only one BVN linked to all his accounts in any number of banks”, he said.
“Without BVN, you still have access to your cash but services/facilities (internet/mobile banking, loans etc) will have some restrictions”, Muazu said further.
Currently, only about 14 million out of about 76 million bank accounts have so far complied.
Seyi Ademosun, project manager, BVN, Nigerian Inter-bank Settlement Systems Plc (NIBSS) last week said the number of registered customers has been projected to increase to 20 million by the end of this month.