Despite the Cashless policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) being a good concept, phobia for electronic mode of payment is real as most people prefer the usage of the traditional/manual system they are used to.
Demola Igbalajobi, Group Head, Remita Services at SystemSpecs Nigeria Limited made this known during his presentation titled ‘Cashless Transactions: Platforms, Challenges And Opportunities’ at the 2012 IT Professionals’ Assembly of the Computer Professionals (Registration Council Of Nigeria), (CPN) held recently.
He noted that the issue of data protection, privacy and confidentiality need to be properly addressed to earn the confidence of Nigerians and adding that legal issue in the cashless policy, the issue of digital signature and the challenge of identity are issues that should be properly addressed in the cashless transactions.
He said the Cashless policy is a good concept which is capable of saving the country several billions of Naira in transaction cost that could have been expended in cash transactions which constitute about eighty percent of the total transactions of Nigerians in the banking industry.
Igbalajobi highlighted other challenges to cashless transactions in Nigeria to include fear of loss of power base – control, resistance to blocking loopholes for ‘sharp’ practices, infrastructure challenges, and admissibility of electronic payments as court evidence.
The Group Head, Remita Services noted that lack of understanding of the concept by the public occasioned by inherent distrust of ‘computers’ by users, lack of innovation on the part of service providers, delays in settlement of interbank transactions as well as absence of a legal framework for ePayment are clogs to the wheel in the wheel of cashless transactions in the country.
Participants at the session agreed that the Nigerian financial ecosystem is evolving and robust and there was the need for the proper integration of rural people into the Nigerian banking system and the cashless policy.
“There is also the need to step up customer education on the cashless policy of the CBN. The challenge of illiteracy is also there. That is, the inability of people to read, write or compute.”
“The issue of Data protection, privacy and confidentiality need to be properly addressed. The Legal issue in the cashless policy, issue of digital signature and the challenge of identity are issues that should be properly addressed in the cashless transactions.”
The session concluded that Information Technology professionals as well as students of Computer Science in tertiary institutions should rise up to the challenge of the cashless policy by using their knowledge and skills in Information Technology to develop more IT solutions that will assist in the acceptance and sustenance of the cashless policy.
“Also, there is need for the government to monitor the policy and its implementation very well because of its attendant security implication on the country.
There is need for a survey or research to be carried out on the needs and expectations of the people as well as find ways of meeting those needs in order to boost the acceptance of the policy.”