An online news platform Apple’s Bite Magazine published an exclusive news article claiming that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will shut down mobile banking on election day in order to discourage vote buying through e-payment fraud.
The claim is false. CBN is not shutting down mobile banking on election day.
An online news platform Apple’s Bite Magazine published an exclusive news report claiming that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will shut down mobile banking on election day in order to discourage vote buying through e-payment fraud.
According to the online magazine, the decision is a result of the artificial scarcity of the newly issued Naira notes in circulation which appears to have made vote buying impossible — this has led “some politicians to resort to e-payment for vote buying.” It stated further.
The report concluded that by temporarily suspending mobile banking, the CBN hopes to reduce the risk of any potential fraud, it is for this reason that it has “implemented a ban on all mobile banking transactions until after the elections have been held. The same exercise would be repeated during the governorship and house of assembly elections on March 11.” It said.
With the presidential election in focus, Nigerians head to the polls in just 3 days from now to vote for a new president who will steer the affairs of the nation for the next four years. However the CBN’s naira redesign policy which many are of the opinion that it is targeted towards curtailing vote buying during the election has done more harm than good by causing uproar in the polity as many Nigerians are finding it difficult to get the redesigned naira notes.
According to a statement signed by the apex bank’s Director, Corporate Communications, Osita Nwanisobi, there was no such plan, he also noted that that the claims are illogical and do not comply with the workings of the Nigerian banking system.
The statement reads in part: “The attention of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has been drawn to a misleading report misquoting the Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, as attributing the current challenge in the distribution of the newly redesigned naira banknotes to a shortage of printing materials at the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Company Plc.
“The Bank, therefore, wishes to appeal to the public to disregard the said report and exercise more restraint, even as we work assiduously to increase the circulation of the new notes in the country.
“Similarly, there is a misleading voice note trending in social media alleging that the CBN planned to shut down some banks, particularly in a particular geo- political region of the country.
“We wish to state unequivocally that there is no such plan and that the claims are illogical and do not comply with the workings of the Nigerian banking system. The public is therefore advised to ignore such recordings as they do not represent the policy thrust of the CBN and are only the desperate attempts of persons bent on inciting the public against the Bank.”
The claim is false, FactCheckElections can confirm that the CBN have no intention to shutdown mobile banking on election day.