Business

CAC Registration: Police To Go After Illegal PoS Operators

The event also introduced a 24-hour service center to expedite responses to inquiries and approvals for prospective applicants.

By Musa Ibrahim

The Federal Government has emphasized that mandatory registration of Point-of-Sale (PoS) operators nationwide will aid in reducing kidnapping incidents and facilitate the apprehension of individuals receiving ransom payments from kidnapping victims.

Additionally, security agencies have pledged to pursue PoS operators who do not comply with the directive to register with the Corporate Affairs Commission by July 7, 2024. Hussaini Magaji, the Registrar-General of the Corporate Affairs Commission, revealed this during the official launch of the registration process for fintech agents and merchants in Abuja.

The event also introduced a 24-hour service center to expedite responses to inquiries and approvals for prospective applicants.

This registration initiative, mandated by both legal statutes and Central Bank of Nigeria directives, aims to safeguard businesses and bolster the economy. Notably, it responds to the prevalence of fraud involving PoS terminals, which accounted for 26.37% of fraud incidents in 2023, as reported by the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Plc.

Hussaini underscored the government’s commitment to implementing this mandate effectively by establishing a fully digitized service center for seamless registration. He reiterated that the registration process aligns with legal requirements and CBN directives, warning that the 60-day deadline for registration will not be extended and that defaulters will face appropriate penalties.

He said, “We have launched a 24-hour service centre to accommodate enquiries from Point of Sales operators and agents who may want to register as directed by the new policy. The secretariat is filled with staff members who have the responsibility of availability, and some are being saddled with the responsibility of approving requests. We have equipped the secretariat with the necessary facilities.

“This is to show you how the government is taking this issue seriously and the centre will be open for a 24-hour service. It will be open for compliance and any feedback from the public especially PoS operators who have been mandated to register their businesses with the commission.”

He added, “We have trained our staff to accommodate these activities and these staff can work from home and that’s why we said 24-hour service. We have equipped them with facilities and they can work from home for approvals and availability segment. The deadline remains 60 days and it will end July 7th.”

The head of the CAC also clarified that the timeline was not meant to single out particular groups or individuals but was genuinely focused on protecting businesses.

The CAC boss explained, “Of course, the mandatory registration will reduce crime and fraudulent practices, the commission is hosting data and if any crime is committed anywhere, the security agencies would have to reach us to know the people behind the company and the fraudsters. But if they are not registered, we can’t do anything and that’s the essence of the registration.

“We have had a situation where a ransom is being paid with a PoS terminal and a lot of fraud but after the registration, if anything happens we can provide the details of the persons behind the company to the government. We will capture the picture and other relevant information and this is a good development for the country.”

He stressed that “after the deadline, we would go after defaulters, If you have been identified as a criminal, security agents will go after you, we will go after them because some are being chased by the security agencies already.”

He elaborated on the benefits of registration, emphasising that it goes beyond taxation to encompass access to loans, legality, and compliance with regulatory requirements.

“The law has stated that for any person to carry out business activity in the country, your business must be legitimate and for your business to be legitimate you must register, either you are doing your business as an individual or as an agent, you must register with us.

“The POS terminal holders are doing business, and we are now enforcing part of the provision of the Company and Allied Matters Act.  We have been on this issue since December and extending it to July means they have six months. We have provided a timeline in the interest of their business.

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