Nigerian deposit money banks have again reminded their customers that they would phase out old cheque books and would no longer honour such by January 1, 2020, THE WITNESS reports.
In a message to their customers on Friday, the financial institutions also urged them to request new cheque books.
One of the banks, First Bank of Nigeria Limited, through an email, entitled ‘No more old cheques from 1 January 2021’, said: “Sequel to the new cheque standard approved by the Central Bank of Nigeria, we will no longer accept old cheques from 1 January 2021. What has changed? Introduction of expiry date on cheques and inclusion of cheque digit on the MICR code line.”
The bank said the new cheque books were available at all FirstBank branches nationwide, urging its customers to “beat the deadline” and request for a new cheque book immediately.
Another lender, Access Bank Plc, drew its customers’ attention to an “important information” regarding their cheque books and NEFT transfers.
According to it, the Central Bank of Nigeria had in September 2019, introduced a new cheque book design across all banks.
“To this end, old cheque leaves will be phased out and no longer be honoured on presentation effective December 31, 2020,” it added, further encouraging customers to request the new cheque book on or before October 31, 2020 through channels made available for them.
It further said, “We would also like to remind you that all cheques with the bank code ‘063’ are no longer valid for clearing and will not be honoured on presentation for payment.”
A similar message by Keystone Bank Limited to their depositors, informed them of the introduction of new cheque book design across all banks by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in September 2019. It reminded them that all cheque leaves currently in circulation shall cease to be valid for the automated clearing system effective January 1, 2021.
“We encourage you to request the new cheque book through the KeyMobile app, internet banking, your account officer or at any Keystone Branch,” it concluded.
THE WITNESS reports that other lenders in the country have also informed their customers of the new development.
The CBN had earlier issued a circular entitled ‘Implementation of the Nigeria Cheque Standard and Nigeria Cheque Printers Accreditation Scheme version 2.0,’ to all DMBs, accredited cheque printers/personalisers and the Nigeria Inter-bank Settlement System dated June 10, 2019.
In the circular, it stated,
“In furtherance to the bank’s effort to ensure a seamless transition to the new cheque standard, it has become necessary to remind all deposit money banks that cheques ordered after 31st August 2019 must conform to the new cheque standard and that the parallel run for old and new cheques shall commence on September 1, 2019.
“The above is in line with the stipulations of the reviewed Nigeria Cheque Standards and Nigeria Cheque Printers Association Scheme document, revised to increase the efficiency and security of the Nigerian Clearing System.
“In order to avoid ambiguities, please note the above timelines, and ensure that your bank’s cheque processing system is ready for the full adoption of the new cheque standard by September 1, 2020.”