Reports say Nigerians in London, United Kingdom, have expressed frustration over the compulsory payment of £30 (about N10, 000) for the registration of the Bank Verification Number, BVN, as directed by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Apparently sad over their plight, some of the affected Nigerians stormed the Nigeria High Commission in London to protest against the directive of the apex bank, while others took to the social media to vent their anger.
The CBN had recently extended the deadline for the BVN registration from 30 June to 31 October, 2015 as disclosed in a circular issued to all deposit money banks operating in the country.
The Director, Banking and Payment Systems Department of the CBN, Dipo Fatokun, said the extension became imperative in order to give bank customers more time to participate in the registration exercise.
The circular had read in part, “It has come to our notice that the BVN registration has elicited tremendous interest from the Nigerian banks’ customers who crowded the banking halls in order to beat the deadline.
“Furthermore, there is the need to give Nigerian banks’ customers in the Diaspora ample time to register on the programme. The guideline for their reistration is being finalised and will be released soon.”
Though the BVN registration in Nigeria is free, Nigerians living in London have had to part with N10,000 to register in the exercise.
The directive was said to have been issued by the apex bank, as confirmed by the UK chapter of the All Progressives Congress and Zenith Bank.
The APC, UK chapter, had asked the bank on Twitter about the authenticity of the directive and the bank replied, saying, “The letter is genuine. The fee is as communicated by CBN and the registration company was contracted by the CBN. We trust this helps.”
“Neither the Ministry of Foreign Affairs nor the Nigeria High Commission in the UK was involved in the BVN registration; the programme was handled by a private company which has no relationship with the ministry or the high commission,” a source said on Friday.
The Director, Corporate Communications Department, CBN, Mr. Mu’azu Ibrahim is yet to comment on the issue.