An Assessment Of The Effect Of Covid-19 Lockdown And POS Availability In Nigeria

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An Assessment Of The Effect Of Covid-19 Lockdown And POS Availability In Nigeria


Abstract


The aim of the study is to ascertain the effect of Covid-19 lockdown and POS availability in Nigeria using Anambra as case study. Survey research design was adopted for study and with the of convenient sampling method the researcher enrolled 36 POS operators in selected business centre in Akwa, Anambra State. Well structure questionnaire was issued to the enrolled participant out of which 30 were retrieved and validated for the study. Data was analyzed using frequencies and tables which provided answers to the research questions. Findings from the study revealed that the covid-19 lockdown to an extent affected those in POS business as they were unable to assess funds for their business since they run third party services. Moreso, findings revealed that POS business centers did not play significant role in limiting the challenge of fund availability for Nigerians during the Covid-19 Lockdown even though they did it, it was minimal. The researcher therefore recommends that In the case of world crises and emergency break out, the government should be proactive in giving some allowance for financial institution to serve their client knowing that without money circulation, citizens cannot survive because they need to purchase items to meet their daily needs.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

The novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is currently a global pandemic. This infectious respiratory disease was first reported in Wuhan, China, in December 2019 [WHO 2020]. Symptoms commonly associated with COVID-19 include cough, fever, fatigue, and breathing difficulties, but sore throat, diarrhea, muscle pain, nasal congestion, and new loss of taste or smell may also occur (CDC 2020). According to WHO (2020), there were 4,098,018 global confirmed cases and 283,271 confirmed deaths worldwide as of 12th May 2020.

In early 2020, the COVID-19 (caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus) pandemic took the world by surprise as it gained widespread across countries. The Coronavirus is believed to have first spread in China in December 2019, before spreading to Thailand, Japan, the Republic of Korea, the United States, Vietnam, Singapore, and other Western Pacific and South-East Asian nations, and then to Russia, Africa, and Latin America McLord (2020).

In a hospital in Wuhan, China, the first index case of COVID-19 was diagnosed as unexplained acute pneumonia. As a result, WHO (Cai et al., 2020; Wang et al., 2020) declared the virus a global pandemic on March 11, 2020, after it was previously identified as a “Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)” on January 30, 2020 (Wang et al., 2020).

About 7 million people were infected with the virus over the course of six months, with about 434,796 people dying and only 4,272,909 recovering (Worldometer, 2020). Due to a shortage of available clinical vaccines to fight the virus, the international community decided to enact lockdown measures, which were first adopted by China’s central government in Wuhan on January 23, 2020.

Subsequently, there were widespread declarations of lockdown in over 100 countries between April and June 2020. This lockdown move became an inevitable option owing to both the anticipated and unanticipated macroeconomic shocks that could be triggered by the evolving virus.

Lockdown has been described as a government-imposed emergency response that requires people to remain indoors in the event of an outbreak. The end aim of the lockout measures in the case of COVID-19 was to flatten the virus’s gradient. Both activity-based centers, such as Banks, hotels, stores, religious houses, and other locations where a large number of people could congregate, was closed as part of the exercise (NCDC, 2020; CDC, 2020; WHO, 2020).

As a result of this, human movement was restricted, hence individuals were unable to assess funds in Banks. However the mobile banking services through the use of smart phones and point of sales (POS) devices facilitated fund withdrawals, transfers, cash backs, bills payment etc. Notably, the POS devices played a significant role in Managing the challenge of unavailability of funds as people were able to perform cashless transaction. Wherefore, upon this note this study is carried out to examine the effect of Covid-19 lockdown and POS availability in Nigeria.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

The widespread dissemination of the COVID-19 virus has thrown the world’s nations, including Nigeria, into a health crisis. The implementation of lockdown measures was deemed the best solution for countering the virus’s dissemination. However, this necessary action had a significant impact on many sectors of the country but most importantly on human movement.

As a result of this, human movement was restricted and were unable to access funds in banks, perform urgent transactions, pay local bills, and so on, which could have posed a significant challenge in the country as at that time. However, mobile banking facilitated services that were able to curb these challenges.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

The apex aim of this study is to ascertain the effect of Covid-19 lockdown and POS availability in Nigeria. However, below are the specific objective;

Examine the extent to which Covid-19 lockdown affected the availability and operation of POS businesses in Nigeria.

Determine if the Covid-19 Stay at home precautionary measure implemented in Nigeria limited the assessment and disbursement of fund by POS operators in Nigeria.

Investigate if POS played a significant role in limiting the challenge of fund availability for Nigerians during the Covid-19 Lockdown.


1.4 Research Questions

  1. What is the extent to which Covid-19 lockdown affected the availability and operation of POS businesses in Nigeria?
  2. Did the Covid-19 Stay at home precautionary measure implemented in Nigeria limited the assessment and disbursement of fund by POS operators in Nigeria?
  3. Did POS play a significant role in limiting the challenge of fund availability for Nigerians during the Covid-19 Lockdown?

1.5 Significance of the Study

This study will provide findings on the relevance of POS and how it was able to manage the challenge of Fund unavailability during the Covid-19 lockdown. Hence this study will undoubtedly be relevant to Banking Industries, POS operators, students, researchers, teachers etc.


1.6 Scope of the Study

The study on the assessment of the effect of covid-19 lockdown and POS availability in Nigeria covers only selected POS business in Anambra State. This study also covers the examination of the extent to which Covid-19 lockdown affected the availability and operation of POS businesses in Nigeria; determining if the Covid-19 Stay at home precautionary measure implemented in Nigeria limited the assessment and disbursement of fund by POS operators in Nigeria; Investigating if POS played a significant role in limiting the challenge of fund availability for Nigerians during the Covid-19 Lockdown.


1.7 Limitation of the Study

During the course of the study, challenges encountered were exclusively but not delimited to the following;

Inadequate Finance:

The research was face with problem of inadequate fund which hinder the researcher from covering as much location as possible.

Time:

Time factor pose another constraint since having to cope in this research which went simultaneously within the time schedule of other academic work making it impossible to undertake this study in large more representative skill.


1.8 Definitions of Terms

Covid-19:

This is also known as Coronavirus disease 2019 and is defined as an illness caused by a novel coronavirus called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2; formerly called 2019-nCoV), which was first identified amid an outbreak of respiratory illness cases in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China

Lockdown:

A lockdown is a mechanism that requires individuals or communities to remain in their current location due to potential threats to themselves or others if they are allowed to travel and communicate freely.

POS:

A point of sale (POS) is a place where a customer executes the payment for goods or services and where sales taxes may become payable. A POS transaction may occur in person or online, with receipts generated either in print or electronically.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Summary

The aim of the study is to ascertain the effect of Covid-19 lockdown and POS availability in Nigeria using Anambra as case study. It examined the extent to which Covid-19 lockdown affected the availability and operation of POS businesses in Nigeria. It determined if the Covid-19 Stay at home precautionary measure implemented in Nigeria limited the assessment and disbursement of fund by POS operators in Nigeria. It investigated if POS played a significant role in limiting the challenge of fund availability for Nigerians during the Covid-19 Lockdown.
Survey research design was adopted for study and with the of convenient sampling method the researcher enrolled 36 POS operators in selected business centre in Akwa, Anambra State. Well structure questionnaire was issued to the enrolled participant out of which 30 were retrieved and validated for the study. Data was analyzed using frequencies and tables which provided answers to the research questions.


5.2 Conclusion

The novel Corona Virus has been described by WHO as an infectious disease.To prevent further spread of the virus, civil societies and National government implemented the lockdown strategy. The implication of this would mean an adverse effect of all sectors of the economy which include the shutting down of financial institutions.

Findings from the study revealed that the covid-19 lockdown to an extent affected those in POS business as they were unable to assess funds for their business since they run third party services. Moreso findings revealed that POS business centers did not play significant role in limiting the challenge of fund availability for Nigerians during the Covid-19 Lockdown even though they did it, it was minimal.


5.3 Recommendation

From the findings of the study, the researcher recommends that:

  1. In the case of world crises and emergency break out, the government should be proactive in giving some allowance for financial institution to serve their client knowing that without money circulation, citizens cannot survive because they need to purchase items to meet their daily needs.
  2. Merchants of POS business should increase internet bandwidths and always make available a dedicated data service network.
  3. Bankers to these merchants need to introduce POS terminals to them and adopt more friendly criteria for POS terminal deployment.
  4. There should be massive awareness program undertaken to publicize the purpose and benefits of the POS system and allay fears of default and fraud.
  5. Management of POS terminals should put in place a workable standby automatic change-over power generating set to minimize cases of frequent power interruption.
  6. Management of POS terminals should have a proper mechanism aimed at reducing incessant internet failure that makes the use of POS uninteresting

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