The introduction of N50 stamp duty on individual transactions above N1000 has led to a reduction in the number of electronic payments processed by agent banking service providers on a daily basis.
As a result, customers affected by this policy have resorted to withdrawing money through the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) and across-the-counter.
Looming danger: While members of the Association of Mobile Money and Bank Agents (AMMBAN) in Nigeria are unhappy with the situation and threatened a protest, Nairametrics gathered that more filling stations in Lagos and Ogun states are gearing up to introduce the same N50 stamp duty charges on payment above N1,000 on PoS terminals and web platforms.
On the other hand, a few mini-marts in Lagos have stalled on the implementation of the policy owing to the fact that their customers could be lost in the process.
Reacting to the policy aftermath, Oluwasegun Abbey, a mobile money operator with agents in five locations in Kwara and Oyo states explained that he used to process between 800 and 900 transactions per day before the policy. However, with the current introduction of charges on individual payments, transactions have dwindled to 600 and 700 every day.
President of AMMBAN, Mr Victor Olojo noted that the policy had only made things worse and he called for a reversal of the policy which he believed would affect the CBN’s motives.
“It has grossly affected transactions. People now prefer to go back to the Automated Teller Machines rather than the PoS because of the charges.
“It is a big issue for us and we feel that the government needs to listen; that policy should be reversed. We have written a letter of protest to the CBN and other relevant stakeholders. We feel that the policy is anti-people because it is the same government that is driving financial inclusion that is also imposing this tax that is affecting those at the base of the pyramid,” he said.
What you should know: Recall that the CBN recently announced a review of the charges for merchant settlement in a bid to further advance the cash-less economy and to enhance the collection of applicable government revenues.
The Apex Bank approved that banks should unbundle merchant settlement amounts and charge applicable taxes and duties on individual transactions as stipulated by regulations.
CBN reviewed the Merchant Service Charge (MSC) from 0.75% capped at N1,200 to 0.50% capped at N1,000 while also disclosing its intention to charge bank customers making cash deposits and withdrawals. The charges, according to the Central Bank, would attract 3% processing fees for withdrawals and 2% processing fees for lodgments of amounts above N500,000 for individual accounts.
Covid-19: Russia applies to WHO for emergency use tag for its vaccine
Russia has submitted applications to the World Health Organization for approval of its COVID-19 vaccine, Sputnik V.
The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which is one of the developers of the Sputnik V, has submitted applications to the World Health Organization (WHO) for an Emergency Use Listing and prequalification of the coronavirus vaccine.
The acceptance of the Covid-19 vaccine by the UN health agency could help allay concerns over its safety and quality.
This was disclosed by Russia’s sovereign wealth fund on Tuesday, October 27, 2020.
Russia was the first country to grant regulatory approval for a novel coronavirus vaccine and did so before large-scale trials were complete, stirring concerns among scientists and doctors about the safety and efficacy of the shot, especially from the western countries.
An Emergency Use Listing (EUL) is meant to make a vaccine available globally faster, while a WHO prequalification is a global quality tag that ensures vaccines are safe and effective.
The Chief Executive Officer of RDIF, Kirill Dmitriev, in a statement, pointed out that the procedures would allow Sputnik V to be included in the list of medical products that meet leading quality, safety and efficacy standards.
In July, Dmitriev had said that Russia aimed to produce 30 million doses in 2020, a goal that was this month dubbed impossible by Russia’s Industry Minister, Denis Manturov, who said a maximum of 2.3 million doses would be made.
The vaccine, developed by Moscow’s Gamaleya Research Institute and marketed by RDIF, is based on a platform of human adenoviral vectors.
What you should know
Nairametrics had earlier reported that President Vladimir Putin announced the approval of the Sputnik V, as the first Covid-19 vaccine to be registered in the world. The approval, which was announced even before the completion of the phase 3 trials, had elicited safety concerns from scientists.
#EndSARS: Army denies shooting at Lekki protesters, says Lagos asked for military
The Nigerian Army has once again denied it fired gunshots at protesters who were gathered at the Lekki toll plaza.
What you should know
Nairametrics reported last week that several social media accounts had revealed that peaceful protesters were allegedly being shot at by the military at the Lekki toll holdout. The Nigerian Army, however, denied deploying soldiers to attack #EndSARS protesters who assembled there.
The Lagos State Government ordered an investigation into the Lekki Toll Plaza shooting that was allegedly done by some men of the Nigerian Army on Tuesday evening. Babajide Sanwo-Olu had also stated that Lagos State would not burn on his watch, as he tried to calm things down after hoodlums wreaked havoc post-Lekki shootings, and announced that the Judicial panel set up by the state would include the incident.
Nairametrics earlier reported that Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu had insisted that there were only two confirmed deaths during the shooting incident that happened a week ago at the Lekki Tollgate.
COVID-19 Update in Nigeria
On the 27th of October 2020, 113 new confirmed cases and 3 deaths were recorded in Nigeria
The spread of novel Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria continues to record significant increases as the latest statistics provided by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control reveal Nigeria now has 62,224 confirmed cases.
On the 27th of October 2020, 113 new confirmed cases and 3 deaths were recorded in Nigeria, having carried out a total daily test of 2,326 samples across the country.
To date, 62,224 cases have been confirmed, 57,916 cases have been discharged and 1,135 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory. A total of 614,480 tests have been carried out as of October 27th, 2020 compared to 612,154 tests a day earlier.
COVID-19 Case Updates- 27th October 2020,
- Total Number of Cases – 62,224
- Total Number Discharged – 57,916
- Total Deaths – 1,1135
- Total Tests Carried out – 614,480
According to the NCDC, the 113 new cases were reported from 12 states- Lagos (51), FCT (15), Plateau (11), Kaduna (8), Oyo (8), Rivers (8), Ogun (4), Edo (2), Imo (2), Kwara (2), Delta (1), Kano (1).
Meanwhile, the latest numbers bring Lagos state total confirmed cases to 20,935, followed by Abuja (6,008), Plateau (3,614), Oyo (3,433), Rivers (2,781), Edo (2,654), Kaduna (2,625), Ogun (2,014), Delta (1,813), Kano (1,743), Ondo (1,666), Enugu (1,314), Kwara (1,069), Ebonyi (1,049), Katsina (952), Osun (923), Abia (898), Gombe (883). Borno (745), and Bauchi (710).
Imo State has recorded 616 cases, Benue (486), Nasarawa (479), Bayelsa (403), Ekiti (332), Jigawa (325), Akwa Ibom (295), Anambra (277), Niger (274), Adamawa (257), Sokoto (165), Taraba (140), Kebbi (93), Cross River (87), Yobe (82), Zamfara (79), while Kogi state has recorded 5 cases only.
Lock Down and Curfew
In a move to combat the spread of the pandemic disease, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the cessation of all movements in Lagos and the FCT for an initial period of 14 days, which took effect from 11 pm on Monday, 30th March 2020.
The movement restriction, which was extended by another two-weeks period, has been partially put on hold with some businesses commencing operations from May 4. On April 27th, 2020, Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari declared an overnight curfew from 8 pm to 6 am across the country, as part of new measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19. This comes along with the phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos, and Ogun States, which took effect from Saturday, 2nd May 2020, at 9 am.
On Monday, 29th June 2020 the federal government extended the second phase of the eased lockdown by 4 weeks and approved interstate movement outside curfew hours with effect from July 1, 2020. Also, on Monday 27th July 2020, the federal government extended the second phase of eased lockdown by an additional one week.
On Thursday, 6th August 2020 the federal government through the secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 announced the extension of the second phase of eased lockdown by another four (4) weeks.