The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has increased the maximum weekly limit for cash withdrawals across all channels by individuals and corporate organisations to N500,000 and N5million, respectively.
The directive came on Wednesday in a circular issued by the apex bank signed by the director of the banking supervision department, Haruna Mustafa.
The apex bank had about two weeks back, reduced the weekly over-the-counter cash withdrawal limit for individuals to N100,000 and that of corporate organisations to N500,000.
It also reduced withdrawals at Automated Teller Machines and point-of-sale terminals to N20,000 daily.
The policy had generated mixed reactions among Nigerians, with the House of Representatives also wading into the matter.
In the circular, the apex bank admitted it made the upward review based on feedback received from stakeholders.
“The CBN hereby makes the following reviews: (1) the maximum weekly limit for cash withdrawal across all channels by individuals and corporate organisations shall be N500,000.00 and N5,000,000.00 respectively.
“In compelling circumstances where cash withdrawal above the limits in (1) is required for legitimate purposes, such requests shall be subject to a processing fee of three per cent and five per cent for individuals and corporate organisations, respectively.
“Further to (2) above, the financial institution shall obtain the following information from the customer, at the minimum, and upload same on the CBN portal created for the purpose: valid means of identification of the payee (national ID, international passport, or driver’s license), bank verification number of the payee, tax identification number of both the payee and the payer, and an approval in writing by the MD/CEO of the financial institution authorising the withdrawal.
“Third party cheques above N100,000 shall not be eligible for payment over-the-counter, while the extant limit of N10 million on clearing cheques still subsist.”
The CBN also said monthly returns on cash withdrawal transactions above the specified limits should be rendered to the banking supervision department, other financial institutions supervision and payments system management departments.
“Compliance with extant AML/CFT regulations relating to the KYC, ongoing customer due diligence and suspicious transaction reporting etc. is required in all circumstances.
“Customers should be encouraged to use alternative channels (internet banking, mobile banking apps, USSD, cards/POS, eNaira, etc.) to conduct their banking transactions,” it added.
While the CBN indicated that it recognised the vital role that cash played in supporting underserved and rural communities, it reiterated that the bank “will ensure an inclusive approach as it implements the transition to a more cashless society.”
The apex bank further stated, “All banks and OFls are to note that aiding and abetting the circumvention of this policy will attract severe sanctions,” CBN said.
“The above directives supersede that of December 6, 2022 and take effect nationwide