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Banks to block all accounts not linked to BVN, NIN – CBN

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The Central Bank of Nigeria has directed financial institutions in Nigeria to place bank accounts without Bank Verification Number or National Identity Number on ‘Post No Debit or Credit’.

The apex bank gave the directive on Friday in a circular, PSM/DIR/PUBICIR/001/053 titled, ‘Circular to All Commercial, Merchant, Non-Interest and Payment Service Banks; Other Financial Institutions, And Mobile Money Operators.

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The circular was signed by the Director, Payment System Management Department, Chibuzo Efobi, and the Director, Financial Policy and Regulation Department, Haruna Mustafa.

According to the apex bank, as part of its efforts to promote financial system stability, it has become necessary to strengthen the Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures in financial institutions under its purview.

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The CBN said it “issues an amendment to Section 1.5.3 of the Regulatory Framework for Bank Verification Number (BVN) Operations and Watch-List for the Nigerian Banking Industry (The Guidelines).

“In this regard, it is mandatory for all Tier-1 bank accounts and wallets for individuals to have BVN and/or NIN. It remains mandatory for Tiers 2 & 3 accounts and wallets for individual accounts to have BVN and NIN.

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“The process for account opening shall commence by electronically retrieving BVN or NIN-related information from the NIBSS’ BVN or NIMC’s NIN databases and for the same to become the primary information for onboarding of new customers. All existing customer accounts/wallets for individuals with validated BVN shall be profiled in the NIBSS’ ICAD immediately and within 24 hours of opening accounts/wallets”.

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