Low turnout at banks as BVN dead­line nears

Daily Trust - - BUSINESS - By Hamisu Muham­mad, Chris Agabi & Sun­day Michael Ogwu, Lagos

There was low turnout for reg­is­tra­tion of the Bank Ver­i­fi­ca­tion Num­ber (BVN) as the ex­er­cise closes this Satur­day, Oc­to­ber 31, 2015, Daily Trust find­ings re­vealed.

Our re­porters ob­served few cus­tomers mak­ing last- min­utes ef­fort to get reg­is­tered in ma­jor ci­ties like Kano, Kaduna and Lagos.

While some cus­tomers are reg­is­ter­ing for the first time, oth­ers who had pre­vi­ously reg­is­tered were seen by our cor­re­spon­dents try­ing to link their var­i­ous ac­counts with their BVN num­bers.

Our cor­re­spon­dent ob­served at some of the banks vis­ited around Garki II, Abuja, Wuse II, Abuja and Cen­tral Area, Abuja that the num­ber of those vis­it­ing the banks to ob­tain their BVN were quite few com­pared to when the ini­tial dead­line of June 2015 ap­proached.

This shows that a lot more Nige­ri­ans have had their ac­counts con­nected with their Bank Ver­i­fi­ca­tion Num­bers (BVN).

In Gwar­inpa, Abuja the turnout for the reg­is­tra­tion was very low in some of the banks vis­ited by our reporter.

A busi­ness­man who iden­ti­fied him­self as Mr. Emeka Eze told our cor­re­spon­dent he had pre­vi­ously ob­tained his BVN in First Bank but now he is submitting his BVN across all his ac­counts in other banks.

Chinedu Joseph, a civil ser­vant also com­mented: “I have my BVN but since any ac­count with­out a BVN num­ber at­tached would have lim­ited bank­ing ser­vice at the ex­pi­ra­tion of the dead­line, I have been go­ing to the other banks where I also have ac­counts to give them my BVN num­ber,” he said.

Some other cus­tomers told our cor­re­spon­dent they are also go­ing through sim­i­lar ex­er­cise this week.

How­ever, a few cus­tomers were seen ob­tain­ing the BVN for the first time. When our cor­re­spon­dent asked why it took them this long to come for the BVN, the ex­cuses ranged from busy sched­ules to com­pla­cency.

One cus­tomer who have her name as Amina Shuaibu,who was cited at Zenith Bank ,Wuse try­ing to do her BVN said her tight sched­ule didn’t per­mit her to do her BVN ear­lier.

Afo­labi John­son, an FCMB cus­tomer said his sit­u­a­tion was ba­si­cally pro­cras­ti­na­tion and com­pla­cency.

“I think it was com­pla­cency and I keep post­pon­ing un­til the dead­line came gain. Now, I don’t have a choice but to come and do it. ‘‘

As last Septem­ber, 2015, statis­tics from the Cen­tral Bank of Nige­ria shows that only 20 mil­lion out of the 52 mil­lion ac­tive bank ac­counts have reg­is­tered for the Bank Ver­i­fi­ca­tion Num­ber (BVN) ex­er­cise. This sug­gests that some huge 32 mil­lion ac­counts are with­out BVN num­bers, 20 mil­lion rep­re­sented sin­gle ac­counts and some of the 20 mil­lion cus­tomers may have mul­ti­ple ac­counts.

Thus, if that sce­nario is fac­tored in, industry watch­ers say the com­pli­ance rate maybe in ex­cess 80 per cent thus far.

Mean­while, all the banks have in­ten­si­fied re­minders on BVN to their cus­tomers through var­i­ous communications plat­forms like emails, sms and the so­cial me­dia plat­forms

The Cen­tral Bank of Nige­ria also ac­knowl­edged the low turnout for the BVN reg­is­tra­tion and called on the pub­lic to take ad­van­tage of the re­main­ing pe­riod.

Ibrahim Muazu, CBN spokesper­son told our reporter that there was low turnout but as­sures that the bank will do its best to im­prove in the pub­lic­ity for cus­tomers to get their BVN be­fore the end of the dead­line.

Records from the Nige­ria In­ter­bank Set­tle­ment Sys­tem (NIBSS) put the lat­est fig­ure of the BVN reg­is­tered cus­tomers as 20.5 mil­lion.

Also, about 12,000 bank cus­tomers in di­as­pora have so far taken ad­van­tage of the BVN reg­is­tra­tion cen­tres cre­ated out­side the coun­try by the Cen­tral Bank of Nige­ria (CBN) and the bankers' com­mit­tee.

It was es­ti­mated that there are about 45 mil­lion bank cus­tomers in the coun­try, how­ever some bank cus­tomers are hav­ing more than one ac­count while some ac­counts are dor­mant.

Mean­while, the Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, Nige­ria In­ter­bank Set­tle­ment Sys­tem (NIBSS), Ade Shonubi has dis­closed that de­posit money banks in­vested N8­bil­lion into the Bank Ver­i­fi­ca­tion Num­ber (BVN) project as a pri­vate sec­tor led ini­ti­atve and there­fore would only share with Nige­ria Iden­tity Man­age­ment Com­mis­sion (NIMC) the data it needs in is­su­ing the Na­tional Iden­ti­fi­ca­tion Num­ber (NIN).

Shonubi dis­closed this yes­ter­day at the un­veil­ing of the BVN chan­nels for easy ver­i­fi­ca­tion of all bu­reaux de change op­er­a­tors (BDCs) cus­tomers for all forex trans­ac­tions from Novem­ber 1, 2015.

This is com­ing on the heels of the direc­tive by the Cen­tral Bank of Nige­ria (CBN) to all BDCs op­er­a­tors to de­mand for cus­tomers’ BVN as part of con­tin­ued ef­forts to sta­bilise the forex mar­ket, stem the ram­pant cases of forex leak­ages and il­licit money trans­fer from Nige­ria.

Shonubi said: “with the data in­te­gra­tion “once you have a bank ac­count you will au­to­mat­i­cally have a NIN. So you don’t need to go to them (NIMC) to get a NIN but you will need to get to them for the card be­cause they still need to take your cur­rent pic­ture and a few other things to put on the card. But we will be able to is­sue a NIN to ev­ery­body who has a bank ac­count be­cause of the in­te­gra­tion.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.