TINUBU Orders CBN To Suspend Cybercrime Levy

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A Senior Presidency official who preferred not to be named told our Correspondent that President Bola Tinubu is sensitive to the plight of Nigerians in these hard times.



In view of the sensitive nature of the yet to be implemented Cybercrime Levy, the President is said to have prevailed on the Central Bank of Nigeria to put a halt to its implementation.



According to source who would not want his name to be mentioned because he is not allowed to make any Press Statement,



The President is sensitive to what Nigerians feel. And he will not want to proceed with implementing a policy that adds to the burden of the people.

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So, he has asked the CBN to hold off on that policy and ordered a review. I would have said he ordered the CBN, but that is not appropriate because the CBN is autonomous. But he has asked the CBN to hold off on it and review things again.”


Another presidency official who preferred to remain anonymous as he was not authorised to speak on the issue said these discrepancies prompted the President to order a review.


If you look at it, the law predates the Tinubu administration. It was enacted in 2015 and signed by Goodluck Jonathan. It is only being implemented now.


You know he (Tinubu) was not around when that directive was being circulated. And he does not want to present his government as being insensitive. As it is now, the CBN has held off the instruction to banks to start charging people. So, the President is sensitive. His goal is not to just tax Nigerians like that. That is not his intention. So, he has ordered a review of that law.”

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Meanwhile, the Vice President, Kashim Shettima, on Saturday, said the tax reforms undertaken by the Bola Tinubu administration were not aimed to frustrate Nigerians but to sustain the country’s investment friendliness.



The VP, represented by his Special Adviser on General Duties Dr Aliyu Umar, spoke at the close-out retreat of the Presidential Fiscal Policy and Tax Reforms Committee held at the Transcorp Hilton, Abuja. Shettima’s Spokesperson, Mr Stanley Nkwocha, revealed this in a statement titled, ‘Our tax reforms initiated for overall benefits of Nigerians – VP Shettima’.



He argued that contrary to speculations in some quarters,

we are not here to frustrate any sector of our economy but to create an administrative system that ensures the benefits of a thriving tax system for all our citizens”.



Levy suspension welcome development – PDP

Reacting to the decision of the President, the Peoples Democratic Party’s National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba, welcomed the  of the cybersecurity suspensionlevy policy implementation, noting that the policy should not have been introduced at all.

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He said,

It was an anti-people decision from the beginning. It was an insensitive decision from the beginning. It was an ambush on the people who had already been frustrated by the multiple layers of taxes from the beginning. So, it was a very cruel introduction because you do not need to tax us to have cybersecurity.



“You do not need to tax the villagers or the people in the rural areas for cybersecurity. People who do not even have light. They don’t even have access to an internet connection. Well, if that is a show that the President is listening, then that is good.


Then, he must now continue to listen more and begin to look at where the problem started and that is the issue of removal of subsidy without any cushioning of its effect.


What will happen is that the President should go back further so that Nigerians can breathe by ensuring a policy that will reduce the hardship of the sudden removal of the subsidy.”

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Also, reacting to the development, the Chief Executive Officer, Centre for Promotion of Private Enterprises, Dr Muda Yusuf, said the President’s decision shows he is a democrat, adding that the CBN should ensure that the reviewing process of the policy is very inclusive.


The President’s decision is in line with the clamour by the people. There had been a lot of outcry about it and the fact that the president has responded shows that he is a democrat. It shows he is a listening leader. So we must commend him for listening to the voices of the people. It is a welcome development.

“The government should now look at the policy. I am sure it is not going to be only the CBN. Even the legislators should also look at it because they passed the law. But the key thing is that the policy needs to be reviewed. And the apex bank should take the review beyond the government level. It must consult the stakeholders and the organised private sectors. That is what will make the review very inclusive.”


Also speaking to Sunday PUNCH, the Director of Centre for Anti-corruption and Open Leadership, Debo Adeniran, said while President Tinubu should be commended for the decision, the Federal Government should consider a total cancellation of the policy instead of a temporary suspension.

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He said,

This is the right step in the right direction. It further accentuates the fact that President Tinubu listens to the voice of the people. And maybe it is because he used to be an activist. He knows that the voice of the people is the voice of God.

“But then, the suspension of the policy is not enough. It should result in the total cancellation of the policy.

All the taxes, rates, and levies that are being imposed on the people should be streamlined so that if we want to pay personal income taxes, we should know that that is what we are paying. It is not that the government will take off personal income taxes and we should now pay for every service that we should enjoy from the government.

And the increase in micro-economic products like petroleum and others should be made cheaper and affordable for all Nigerians,” he stated.

Sunday Punch





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