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Cybersecurity levy: FG more interested in milking dying economy, says Peter Obi

Cybersecurity levy: FG more interested in milking dying economy, says Peter Obi
May 08
13:11 2024

Peter Obi, presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP) in the 2023 elections, says the federal government is more interested in milking a dying economy through the introduction of the cybersecurity levy.

In a post on his X account on Wednesday, Obi said the policies implemented by the government not only drive the citizens into poverty but also diminish the country’s competitiveness in the economic environment.

According to Obi, it is unreasonable to expect the struggling citizens of Nigeria to individually finance all government activities.

“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,” Obi said.

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“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 hence 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. Policies such as this not only impoverish the citizens but make the country’s economic environment less competitive.

“At a time when the government should be reducing taxes to curb inflation, the government is instead introducing new taxes. And when did the office of the NSA become a revenue-collecting centre?

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

On May 6, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) directed banks and other financial institutions to implement a 0.5 percent cybersecurity levy on electronic transfers.

CBN said the policy would take effect in two weeks and charges would be described as ‘Cybersecurity Levy’.

The apex bank said the charges would be remitted to the national cyber security fund, which would be administered by the office of the national security adviser (ONSA).

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