The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed banks to pay N10,000 for each failed transaction based on customers’ complaints not reversed within 24 hours.
This was contained in a circular by the apex bank, which also noted that the same fine shall apply for issues relating to the Nigeria Interbank Settlement System Instant Payment (NIP).
In the circular dated September 13, 2018, the new regulation sets out to provide a framework for Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) transactions in the country.
The circular read: “A failed NIP transaction not reversed into customer’s account within 24 hours based on complaints of sender and/or beneficiary. N10,000.00 per item.
“Delayed application of inward NIP into beneficiary’s accounts beyond 4 minutes. Based on complaints of sender and/ or beneficiary. N10,000.00 per item.”
The circular entitled: ‘Regulation on Instant (Inter-Bank) Electronic Funds Transfer Services In Nigeria’, also gave sanctions for erroneous funds transfers.
It read: “Whenever a credit has been erroneously applied to the customer’s account with the Receiving Entity, the customer shall promptly notify the Receiving Entity and authorize the reversal of such erroneous credit.
“Where the customer account is unfunded, the customer shall provide funds within 24 hours, failure to provide funds shall be a ground for watch-listing of the customer in the banking industry, Credit Bureau and reporting to law enforcement agencies.”
For recalled transfers due to customer error, the circular noted that: “Where a customer claims to have made a transfer in error, the following provisions shall apply: Where the beneficiary is known to the complainant, the Sending Entity shall encourage the complainant to contact the beneficiary for an amicable settlement; where the beneficiary is not known to the complainant or a known beneficiary refused to effect a refund to the complainant, the Sending Entity having received a tenable claim from customer shall notify the Receiving Entity who shall place a lien on the amount in the account of the beneficiary and thereafter obtain the consent of the beneficiary to execute refund.
“Where the beneficiary does not give consent, the internal auditors of the Sending and Receiving Entities shall mediate between the two customers within 2 weeks of the complaint to resolve the issue, and their decision shall be final. Accordingly, the lien on the amount in the beneficiary’s account shall not last more than 2 weeks.
“Where the contested beneficiary has utilised the fund such that lien could not be placed, and he/she refuses to fund the beneficiary account to facilitate refund, the Receiving Entity’s Internal Auditors shall watch-list the customer’s BVN and the Sending Entity may report the incident to law enforcement agencies.”