Why CBN denied Nigeria telcos mobile money licenses

GOVERNMENT

-
Image: L-R: Tunde Kuponiyi, Globacom, Lolo Emorpkae, NCC and George Samsa, CBN at the Telecoms Consumer Parliament. By Lukas Ajanaku
L-R: Tunde Kuponiyi, Globacom, Lolo Emorpkae, NCC and George Samsa, CBN at the Telecoms Consumer Parliament

By Lukas Ajanaku, Lagos, Nigeria

Despite knowing their about 100 million subscribers, Nigeria's financial sector regulator, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said it refused to license mobile phone operators to operate mobile money services in the country.

The CBN which spoke to Biztechafrica on the sidelines of the 66th edition of Telecoms Consumer Parliament (TCP) convened on Friday at the Excellence Hotel, Ogba, Ikeja, Lagos, explained that granting telecommunication service providers license to offer the service might compromise service quality in the country.

MTN, Etisalat, Airtel and Globacom are the gladiators in the global system for mobile (GSM) communication in the country, Visafone, Starcomms, ZomMobile and a few others operate in the sick code division multiple access (CDMA) section of the telecoms industry in the country.

George Sansa, a representative of the apex bank at the event, said when the issue of granting licenses for mobile money came up, it was debated thoroughly and it was agreed that mobile operators should not be burdened unnecessarily with offering mobile money services.

The issue of depreciating telecoms services has remained a daunting challenge to operators and regulators in the country with subscribers usually left to lick their wounds.

Sansa explained that in view of the challenges facing the operators, the CBN restricted their role in the scheme to providing only the traffic for the exercise.

“The CBN went through a rigorous process in rolling out the guidelines which are of international standard for the scheme.”

“The operators are supposed to be carriers. In order to avoid a clash, telecoms operators were exempted from the grant of operational licenses. We want to avoid a clash on interest,” Sansa said.

On security of the payment system in view of the massive fraud that greeted the introduction of automated teller machines (ATMs) in the country a couple of years ago, the CBN official said the apex bank has constituted an e-fraud forum which will not only collate electronic fraud cases in the country but investigate the modus operandi of such crime and suggest ways of nipping it in the bud.

On power failure factor which may likely scuttle the success of the scheme, he said there were dedicated lines for e-payment connectivity in the country, arguing that with the relentless investment of the federal government in the power sector, there appears a light at the end of the tunnel soon.



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE GOVERNMENT NEWS

Kenyan capital adopts e-payment system

The Nairobi City County Government has moved to ease payment for services and streamline revenue collection by switching to e-payments. Read More

Congo-Brazzaville to launch digital governance agency

The Republic of Congo will soon launch a digital governance agency, to monitor and control the implementation of the country’s ICT projects.  Read More

Malawi launches Internet Governance Forum

Dr Edmund Katiti The Malawi Government and Nepad have launched the Malawi Internet Governance Forum in an effort to bring a semblance of order to the internet services in the country. Read More

Environmentalists welcome improved technology

Participants in a recent Monitoring For Environment and Security in Africa (MESA) conference in Botswana were upbeat about the new technologies that MESA is harnessing.  Read More

Kaberuka addresses Africa’s infrastructure gap at OECD

African Development Bank President Donald Kaberuka made a strong case for the importance of tackling private investment impediments in the African infrastructure agenda during the joint AfDB, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and International Growth Center (IGC) event in Paris. Read More

Kenya inaugurates USAC

Kenya’s new Universal Service Advisory Council (USAC) has been inaugurated by the Cabinet Secretary, Information, Communications and Technology.  Read More

Education Minister: ICT vital in schools

Botswana’s Acting Minister of Education and Skills Development, Mokgweetsi Masisi, has called for an increased uptake of ICTs in all schools in the country.  Read More

Innovation Hub introduces new offices

The Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) has opened two new offices to services its wider clientele base.  Read More

Orange, DRC govt sign fibre optic deal

PTTIC DRC Orange and the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo have signed a deal which will see Orange take control of the country’s fibre optic platform.  Read More

NCC presents telecoms governance code

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has launched a Corporate Governance Code for the telecommunications industry. Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage ERP AfricaSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionSage HR AfricaMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoice

FEATURED STORY

Widening ICT skills gap: Cause for concernWidening ICT skills gap: Cause for concern

Nigeria's FDI gains could be eroded by the widening gap in indigenous skilled ICT manpower, writes Kokumo Goodie.

IN DEPTH

Kenya rolls out e-extension to improve agricultureKenya rolls out e-extension to improve agriculture

In a bid to curb the overwhelmed number of agricultural extension officers in Kenya, the ministry of agriculture is embracing technology with their introduction of E-Extension services, which are aimed at reaching out to over 7 million farmers annually.

COMPANY NEWS

VMware reports second quarter 2014 results

VMware, the global leader in virtualization and cloud infrastructure, today announced financial results for the second quarter of 2014.

New Sage ERP X3 version puts business information at your fingertips

Sage ERP Africa has announced the availability of Sage ERP X3 version 7, the latest version of its global business management solution for midsized companies. 

How the cloud can power entrepreneurship and urbanisation in Africa

Cloud computing is not only fundamentally changing the way business operates, it is also driving a new wave of job creation opportunities, says SAP Africa.