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PoS Operator Registration Deadline Extended by CAC: Relief or Respite?

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The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has provided a much-needed sigh of relief for Point of Sale (PoS) operators in Nigeria by extending the registration deadline by 60 days. Initially set for July 7, 2024, operators now have until September 5, 2024, to register their businesses with the CAC.

This extension comes after concerns were raised by operators regarding difficulties encountered during the registration process on the CAC portal. The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, even intervened, appealing to the Commission to simplify the process.

PoS Registration Rationale

The CAC’s decision to mandate registration stems from their desire to:

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Combat Fraud: The rise of fraudulent activities associated with PoS businesses is a major concern. Registration will allow the CAC to create a central database of operators, potentially aiding in identifying and combating criminal activity.

Strengthen the Economy: Formalizing PoS businesses brings them under the legal framework, fostering a more robust financial ecosystem and potentially increasing government revenue through taxes.

Safeguard Businesses and Customers: Registration aims to protect both PoS operators and their customers by ensuring transparency and accountability within the industry.

Comply with regulations: Adhere to Section 863, Subsection 1 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) 2020 and the 2013 CBN guidelines on agent banking.

Challenges with Registration

Despite the stated benefits, the initial deadline and perceived registration difficulties caused concern among PoS operators. Many complained about the complexity of the process on the CAC portal. This led to an appeal from Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, who suggested the CAC adopt a more user-friendly model similar to the state tax card system.

AMMBAN’s Opposition

The Association of Mobile Money and Bank Agents in Nigeria (AMMBAN) previously criticized the mandatory registration, calling it a veiled attempt to raise government revenue through additional taxation of Nigerians.

Related: Proposed Tax Relief for Nigeria’s Informal Sector

If You Ask Me

The CAC’s decision to extend the deadline acknowledges these challenges and provides operators with additional time to navigate the registration process. However, several questions remain:

Will the CAC portal be streamlined to address user-friendliness concerns?

Will there be further outreach and sensitization efforts to ensure PoS operators are fully informed?

Will the CAC consider alternative registration methods for those lacking internet access?

While answers are yet to be provided, the CAC can take advantage of the Lagos State Government’s willingness to collaborate. Open communication and streamlined processes can also ensure a smoother registration experience. Additionally, industry associations like AMMBAN can play a crucial role in educating and assisting their members.

The PoS operator registration saga highlights the need for a balanced approach. While regulations aim to strengthen the financial sector and combat fraud, ensuring a user-friendly and accessible registration process is equally important. The coming months will be crucial in determining the effectiveness and long-term impact of the CAC’s initiative.

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