The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced a series of new sanctions that will be meted out to Deposit Money Banks (DMBs), Mobile Money Operators (MMO) and Other Financial Institutions (OFIs) for electronic payment infractions.
The series of new sanctions released by the apex bank was contained in the latest document obtained on the bank’s website and titled: ‘Regulations on Electronic Payments and Collections for Public and Private Sectors in Nigeria.’
The details: According to the CBN, the newly released regulation is a revision of the guidelines on Electronic Payment of Salaries, Pensions, Suppliers and Taxes in Nigeria (2014), and is intended to guide the end-to-end electronic payment of salaries, pensions and other remittances, suppliers and revenue collections in Nigeria.
The CBN stated that all DMBs, OFIs and Mobile Money Operators must:
- promote the adoption of end-to-end electronic payments by all stakeholders covered by this regulation;
- provide payers and beneficiaries with appropriate accounts with DMBs, OFIs or any other approved channel for receiving payments such as mobile money/electronic wallet, subject to the CBN’s approved KYC limits;
- process electronic payment instructions in accordance with subsisting payments system and clearing system rules;
- publish customer service/ contact centres details via multiple media channels and maintain customer service contact centres, to promptly attend to all electronic payment enquiries and challenges within stipulated timelines; and report of customer complaints, indicating resolution status;
- make available any or combination of the following data sets, as may be applicable, along with the mandatory returns to the CBN, on a monthly basis or as may be otherwise specified:
I. Number of salary/pension/supplier/tax-paying organisations
II. Salaries/pension/supplier/tax payment transactions count
III. Salaries/pension/supplier/tax payment transactions value per payment method given below;I. end-to-end; bank assist;
II. cheques; and
- in the event of duplicated/excess payments, establish a recovery process engaging both Payers and Beneficiaries in line with subsisting CBN.
According to the Central Bank, any DMB, OFI or MMO that fails to discharge the responsibilities as detailed above shall be penalised.
Compliance: Following the implementation of the Guideline on end-to-end electronic payment of salaries, pensions, suppliers and taxes by all public and private sector organisations, the CBN also instructed DMBs to dishonour payment instructions for all forms of salaries, pensions, suppliers and taxes not transmitted on a CBN approved straight-through electronic payment and collection platform issued by organisations with more than 20 employees.
This means payment instructions and associated schedules are no longer to be transmitted to DMBs through unsecured channels, such as paper-based mandates, flash drives, compact discs (CDs), email attachments, etc. by qualifying public and private sector organisations.
The sanctions: Among other sanctions, the CBN disclosed that failure to offer 3rd party e-payment solution to customers not approved by CBN now attracts a penalty of N2 million for DMB and N1 million for OFIs on every repeated occurrence.
- Transactions not consummated within the timelines prescribed in the relevant payment channel regulation or non-return of un-applied funds to payer’s account within 24 hours attract a penalty of N1,000 per transaction.
- Also, the non-provision of the quarterly report on end-to-end e–payment of salaries, pensions, suppliers & taxes to the CBN now attracts N5,000 penalty for each day for which report is not provided to the CBN or a penalty of N250,000 and a warning letter to the Managing Director.
Guinea Insurance Plc gives optimistic Q3 earnings forecast in spite of COVID-19
Note that some companies have had to revise their earnings estimates due to pandemic.
Guinea Insurance Plc is being very optimistic, having projected a 78.6% rise in gross premium written to N1.8 in Q3 2020, up from N1 billion during the comparable period in 2019. The insurer also forecasted a profit after tax of N185.8 million for the period, indicating an expected better performance compared to N735 million loss recorded in Q3 2019.
The earnings forecast, which was sent to the Nigerian Stock Exchange earlier today, also estimated that reinsurance expense for Q3 will be at N337.5 million. Claims expenses, underwriting expenses, and other operating experiences were equally put at N331.3 million, N292.6 million, and N692.2 million, respectively.
Note that this forecast is coming amid the negative economic impacts wrought by the Coronavirus pandemic. But while a growing list of companies (including Guinness Nigeria Plc) has downgraded their 2020 earnings and profitability forecasts, Guinea Insurance is expecting growth and that is good.
In Q1 2020, Guinea Insurance Plc reported gross premium written OF N207 million and a profit after tax of N12.6 million. The company’s consolidated half-year 2020 financial has not been released and is expected sometime between this month and next month.
The company’s share price ended today’s trading on the Nigerian Stock Exchange at N0.20. Year to date, this stock has not recorded any price movement.
CBN unification of exchange rate a welcome development – MAN
Ahmed urged the CBN to tackle activities that made speculators manipulate the multiple exchange rates.
The President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Mr Mansur Ahmed, announced on Friday that the recent CBN unification of Nigeria’s exchange rate is a welcome development that will boost investor confidence in Nigeria.
He said the exchange rate unification will enable stable planned production for manufacturers in Nigeria leading to economic growth, adding that the Manufacturers Association had urged for an exchange rate unification to enable a market-friendly business environment in Nigeria.
“Clearly, this is a welcome development and a laudable initiative that has come at the right time.”
“This is more so, particularly, now that the economic outlook is gloomy in light of the impact of the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic that has culminated in uninspiring macroeconomic situations,” he said.
He revealed that the World Bank had attributed Nigeria’s falling Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) to the multiple exchange rates as investors felt a “manipulation of the foreign exchange market.”
“The unification will also boost investors’ confidence, control rising inflation, and promote transparency, entrench better exchange rate management and eradicate distortions to the barest minimum,” he added.
He urged the CBN to tackle activities that made speculators manipulate the multiple exchange rates like “round-tripping” which he says expand the inflows of foreign investment into the economy.
He called on the Central Bank to implement 2 strategies to ensure a smooth transition into a unified exchange rate system.
“The first is to limit the short-term pains until efficiency gains materialize by responding swiftly with an inward-oriented rescue guideline while the second should seek to boost the pace at which such efficiency gains materialize,” he said.
He advised, it’s necessary the CBN “submit all the instruments of exchange rate determination” towards a free-market approach.
Seplat appoints Emeka Onwuka as CFO
Onwuka has over 30 years’ experience in financial services across Sub-Saharan Africa.
Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc. has appointed Mr. Emeka Onwuka as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Director, Lagos, and London.
The appointment takes effect from August 1, 2020.
The appointment was announced in a notice sent to the Nigeria Stock Exchange on Friday and has been ratified by the company’s board of directors.
According to the notice which was signed by the company secretary and chief governance compliance officer, Mrs. Edith Onwuchekwa, the Board of Seplat is confident that “the wealth of knowledge and experience Onwuka brings will be a great addition to the Company”.
Mr. Onwuka has over 30 years’ experience in financial services across Sub-Saharan Africa. Mr Onwuka is a Partner at Andersen Tax Nigeria and holds various Board positions as Chairman; FMDQ Securities Exchange Limited; Director FMDQ Holdings Limited; Director, Ecobank Nigeria Limited; and Director, Bharti Airtel Nigeria.
He was also the former Group Managing Director /CEO of Diamond Bank Plc and former Chairman of Enterprise Bank Limited.
He is a Chartered Accountant, a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, and a Fellow of Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria.
Mr. Onwuka received his B.SC. in Political Science from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and holds an MBA from the University of Benin.
He is an alumnus of the Lagos Business School, Wharton Business School and Harvard Business School.
Onwuka also holds the Nigerian National Honor, Officer of the Order of the Niger (OON).