HomeNewsSenate backs contentious Cybersecurity Levy.

Senate backs contentious Cybersecurity Levy.

The Nigerian Senate has shown support for the controversial Cybersecurity levy, with Senator Shehu Umar Buba, Chairman of the Senate Committee on National Security and Intelligence, asserting that the levy is intended to enhance the economy rather than burden citizens.

Senator Buba highlighted that the levy, mandated by the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, etc.) (Amendment) Act of 2024, is structured to be non-punitive. It includes exemptions designed to relieve ordinary and low-income individuals from its impact. These exemptions cover salary payments, transfers within the same account, and transactions involving loan disbursements and repayments.

He explained that the Central Bank of Nigeria consulted extensively with the National Assembly prior to incorporating the Cybersecurity Levy in the amended Act, attributing previous delays to the ambiguity in interpreting certain provisions. “The original Cybercrimes Act of 2015 included a provision for a Cybersecurity Levy, but the imprecision of Section 44 led to various interpretations until it was clarified in the 2024 amendments,” said Buba.

The levy itself is set at 0.5%, which is half a percent of the value of all specified electronic transactions, as outlined in the Second Schedule to the Act. According to Senator Buba, the recent amendments have filled significant legislative gaps and have strengthened the framework needed to effectively implement the National Cybersecurity Programme.

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