The federal government says every person that owns an account with financial institutions has to undergo a self-certification process.
The directive was announced on Thursday via the federal government’s Twitter handle.
Account-holders are required to obtain, complete and submit the self-certification forms to their respective financial institutions.
The federal government said individuals who hold accounts in different financial institutions would have to collect and submit separate forms to each one of the institutions.
Three categories of forms for entities, individuals and controlling person (individuals having a controlling interest in a legal person, trustee, etc) are said to be available
“The forms are required by the relevant financial institutions to carry out due diligence procedures in line with the Income Tax Regulations 2019,” it said.
“Failure to comply with the requirement to administer or execute this form attracts sanctions which may include monetary penalty or inability to operate the account.”
It is not yet clear how the self-certification process differs from the bank verification number (BVN) and national identification number (NIN).
The BVN is a prerequisite to owning a bank account and it is used to link all bank and pension accounts owned by an individual.
The NIN is also another form of identification introduced by the federal government and is a prerequisite for getting an international passport.
The National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) currently harmonising the NIN and BVN and has set a five-year target to register all Nigerians after a $430 million World Bank loan for the Nigeria digital identification for development project.
In May, Aliyu Aziz, the NIMC director-general, said 14 million BVN had been harmonised with NIN.
In September, the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) launched an automatic exchange of information-common reporting standard (AEOI-CRS) system for the use of financial institutions which it described as a step towards “aligning the country’s tax system with global standards”.
The federal government has also not announced what provisions would be made for citizens in the diaspora given that they partook in the NIN, BVN enrollment.
Nigerians on social media have begun to react to the announcement with some requesting for an electronic certification option considering the COVID-19 pandemic.