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CBN clarifies N89trn Stamp Duty claim, says banks collected N370.686bn

CBN

.No going back on Jan 31 deadline for old naira notes- Emefiele

By Motolani Oseni

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has clarified the claims that it is holding on to N89 trillion stamp duty collected by the Deposit Money Banks (DMBs)

Speaking to the newsmen after the first Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting of the apex bank in Abuja on Tuesday, the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele said that the total revenue collected as stamp duty between 2016 and 2022 stood at N370. 686 billion.

He explained that the money was not N89 trillion as claimed by Muhammed Kazaure, a member of the House of Representatives, in a petition to the president in 2022, adding that the CBN was not withholding N89 trillion.

Emefiele said the clarification became necessary following allegation that a humongous sum of N89 trillion collected as stamp duty had been stolen.

According to him, the total assets of all banks in the country was N44 trillion. “From 2016 till date, stamp duty collection has amounted to N370, 686 billion.

“The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has disbursed N226.451 billion of the money to the federation Account Committee, while the balance of N144, 235billion is in the central bank,’ he said.

Giving the breakdown of the money, he said: “Total assets of all banks is N71 trillion; Total deposit in banks is N44 trillion, and from 2016 till date, stamp duty collection has amounted to N370.686 billion.

“The highest collection of the stamp is N71 billion, collected by First Bank,” Emefiele said.

He added that the CBN had appointed four world-class audit firms to go into the books of banks to verify if there was any un-remitted stamp duty. If there is any uncollected stamp duty, the banks will pay to the last kobo,” he assured.

The CBN governor also said the deadline for the validity of the old 200, 500 and 1,000 naira notes is still January 31.

Emefiele, at the MPC meeting, said the 90-day window given by the CBN for Nigerians to deposit their old currencies was enough.

He said: “We called on the deposit money banks (DMBs) to extend their working hours, and to work on weekends.

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“There is no reason to talk about a shift. The new currencies are available.”

Emefiele said the CBN had mandated commercial banks to feed the new notes into their automated teller machines (ATMs) for Nigerians to have equal access.

“We have increased disbursement of the new notes to them. There is adequate quantity of new notes available. Our mint is producing and we are supplying the banks.

“We have super agents in underserved areas like riverine communities, and CBN staff members have been out on mobilisation. We believe that by January 31, the new naira notes would have permeated the nooks and crannies of the country,” the governor said.

Emefiele added that the CBN had so far received about N1.5 trillion of the old naira notes.

He urged Nigerians to accelerate the process of taking their old notes to the banks before the deadline, adding that they should not fear harassment from security agents.

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