Home News Cybersecurity Levy Will Impoverish Nigerians More – Peter Obi

Cybersecurity Levy Will Impoverish Nigerians More – Peter Obi

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The Labour Party (LP) candidate for the 2023 general election, Peter Obi, has criticized the Federal Government for introducing the Cybersecurity Levy, saying it will impoverish Nigerians more.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) directed banks to implement a 0.5% cybersecurity levy on certain electronic transactions.

CBN gave this directive in a circular dated Monday, May 6, instructing the banks to start implementing the levy in two weeks.

The notice included all commercial banks, merchant banks, non-interest banks, and payment service banks among others.

Obi in a post on his X handle on Wednesday said the introduction of yet another tax, in the form of Cybersecurity Levy, on Nigerians who are already suffering severe economic distress is further proof that the government is more interested in milking a dying economy instead of nurturing it to recovery and growth.

He said this does not only amount to multiple taxation on banking transactions, which are already subject to various other taxes including stamp duties.

According to him, it negates the Federal Government’s avowed commitment to reduce the number of taxes and streamline the tax system.

“The imposition of a Cybersecurity Levy on bank transactions is particularly sad given that the tax is on the trading capital of businesses and not on their profit,” Obi said.

“Hence, this will further erode whatever is left of their remaining capital, after the impact of the Naira devaluation and high inflation rate.

“It is inconceivable to expect the suffering citizens of Nigeria to separately fund all activities of the government.”

The former Anambra state governor said policies such as this not only impoverish the citizens but make the country’s economic environment less competitive.

Obi lamented that at a time when the government should be reducing taxes to curb inflation, it is instead introducing new taxes.

The CBN in the circular also said that the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) will be tasked with collecting the cybersecurity levy from banks, a directive which Obi criticized.

“And when did the office of the NSA become a revenue collecting centre?,” Obi asked.

“And why should that purely national security office receive returns on a specific tax as stated in the new cybersecurity law?”



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