Commercial Banks In Nigeria Close Over Two Million Accounts In 2024 Q1

Commercial banks in Nigeria have closed 2.021 million bank accounts in the first quarter of 2024, Q1’24.

The move was taken to comply with regulatory orders on the linkage of bank accounts to the National Identity Number (NIN) and also clean their books of questionable accounts.

The development was contained in a report by the Nigerian Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS), which also indicated that the number of inactive bank accounts grew month-on-month (MoM) by four million or 2.0 per cent to 19.7 million in March 2024 from 19.3 million in the previous month, February.

Truetells Nigeria understands that a bank account is classified inactive when it records zero transactions including deposits, withdrawals, transfers or point-of-sale transactions for six months.

However, details of the “Industry Bank Account Database”, a monthly data reported by banks, and compiled by the Nigerian Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS) also indicated that the number of active bank accounts grew by 6.62 million or 3.0 per cent to 219.64 million from 213.02 million in February.

Recall that in December 2023, the CBN issued a directive to all commercial banks in the country to restrict tier-1 accounts without proper Biometric Verification Number (BVN) and NIN that are not linked by Thursday, March 1st, 2024.

According to NIBSS data on BVN enrollment count, 61.6 million Nigerians have BVN as of April 2024.

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