The Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Godswill Akpabio has called for measures to protect electronic payment platform in the country from the activities of fraudsters.
The governor made the call in a keynote address delivered at the 3rd annual conference of Committee of E-Banking Industry Heads (CeBIH) held in Uyo, Akwa Ibom, a copy of which was obtained at the weekend.
The conference tagged: “E-payment System: Harnessing Opportunities for Growth and Profitability,” was attended by e-payment experts from across the world.
Akpabio expressed displeasure that the American Federal Bureau of Statistics referred to 419 as the “Nigerian crime”, and profiles it as scam e-mails emanating mostly from Nigeria.
This, the governor said, had “greatly affected and dented our image”, and hence had become an urgent issue of concern to all Nigerians.
Represented by the Deputy Governor, Mrs. Valerie Ebe, the governor told the gathering of electronic payment experts that “since these scam artists use electronic payment platforms to defraud their victims, I urge you to think of a way to stop this and salvage our image as a nation. I urge you to do this as a patriotic duty.”
Commending the Central Bank of Nigeria and CeBIH for the implementation of the cashless policy, Akpabio said: “The introduction of the cashless policy in Nigeria is already a great boom and has eased transactions for our countrymen.
The Chairman of CeBIH and his team have done a difficult job pretty well. They have ensured that the banking industry in Nigeria adopts best global practices in terms of techniques and reforms. We appreciate and commend them”.
The governor noted despite the huge advantages offered by e-payment, Nigerians were yet to fully explore the full benefits of the technological advancement in the banking industry.
Consequently, he urged the e-banking officials, “to explore the best avenues of ensuring that Nigerians take full benefits of numerous opportunities that e-payment system offer to enhance their mode of transactions.”
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Chairman of CeBIH, Mr. Chuks Iku, said the conference was to look at how the payment system industry could experience growth in user base by way of introducing elements like mobile money and agent banking, while remaining profitable in the medium and long term.