BVN deadline: 32 million bank accounts yet to register

Only 20 million out of the 52 million active bank accounts have registered for the Bank Verification Number (BVN) exercise.

This suggests that a large number of 32 million accounts remain without BVN numbers. Unless these accounts holders hasten to obtain the BVN before the extended deadline of October 31, 2015 expires, they would be denied certain banking services.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) maintains there will be no extension after the new deadline. This means that customers without the BVN-linked accounts may risk being restricted from normal operations of their accounts or free access to their bank account balances.

The CBN has warned that any bank customer without the number would be deemed to have inadequate know-your-customers (KYC) data and this may affect his or her transactions with his/her bank. Cheques of certain amounts from those accounts will be denied and credit facilities will not be advanced to them. Money transfers, loans and contingencies will also be denied defaulters.

Already some banks are already demanding that BVN numbers be written on all transaction documents for speedy processing.

Given this development, there is the apprehension that the commotion and melee experienced at various banking halls in the month of June 2015 when the last deadline was expiring might be repeated as the new deadline looms, especially if customers do not use the next couple of weeks to ensure that they complete their BVN registration, and also get their various accounts linked to the BVN.

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