MTN will today officially launch mobile money, MoMo, operations in Nigeria, its biggest market and Africa’s most populous nation.
Mobile Money schemes across Africa typically help make cash transfers and payments via mobile phone connections. It is seen as a key measure to bridging financial inclusion. The launch is taking place at the Hilton Abuja.
As its biggest market, the Nigeria launch is seen as a significant move by experts and industry players. One of MTN’s biggest and successful MoMo operations in West Africa is in Ghana.
Some key pointers of the operation on take off shall be:
- Customers send a text for free and get a response giving them a list of registered agents near them.
- Customers pay transfer sum to agents who in turn gives them a code to be transmitted to the receiver. The receiver goes to an agent near them and collects the cash.
- The sender will pay 100 naira though. N50 will go to the sending agent and the paying agent will also get N50.
- The minimum amount that can be transferred is N100 and the maximum is either N50,000 or N100,000 depending on the agent.
- The recipient must claim the money within 30 days or the voucher will expire.
A key issue raised by a former top civil servant has been the 100 naira charge on transaction which he says is about double the about 52 naira charged on mobile banking transactions.
Ghana’s Mobile Money regime
MTN Ghana describes Mobile Money as “a fast, simple, convenient, secure and affordable way of transferring money, making payments and doing other transactions using a mobile phone.
“The service is offered by MTN in partnership with over 10 partner banks. You can use MTN Mobile Money to send and receive money, top-up MTN airtime, pay bills (DStv, ECG Postpaid, MTN Postpaid, School fees and more), buy & pay for insurance, pay employee salaries, pay for airline tickets and other goods and services.
“No need to travel far or wait impatiently to receive or send money. Register with a valid photo ID today and enjoy the ease and convenience Mobile Money offers. The services on offer include:
- Pay your bills online or through your phone.
- Recharge your credit easily.
- Transfer money to your loved ones without going to the bank.
“MTN Mobile Money is a service provided by MTN in partnership with partner banks. The service operates through authorised Agents who will facilitate the service on behalf of Mobile Money Limited.”
You see, Kenya drove their Mobile Money initiative through Telcos, not banks. Thankfully, the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Digital Financial Policy of 2018 reversed this policy to put Telcos in the driving seat. This should encourage wider financial inclusion for the poor.— Dr. Joe Abah (@DrJoeAbah) August 27, 2019