IN SHORT: The Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System has delisted some non-deposit-taking financial institutions, but online claims that a microfinance bank and some popular mobile money operators will be affected are false.
One such claim on Facebook reads: “CBN Direct Banks to Delist OPAY, KUDA, MONIEPOINT,PALMPAY from their NIP Transfer System. What this Means is that soon you won’t be able to send money to the above Accounts.”
Registration on these platforms was also easy, as users could simply register online with their phone numbers, and were charged little or nothing for transactions. This brought the platforms millions of users and a surge in their monthly transaction value.
The claims come on the back of an announcement by the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System. Nibss is owned by all licensed banks in Nigeria and it handles instant payments and other related services between banks.
In December 2023 Nibss said that such companies, which it described variously as payment solution service providers, switches and super agents, should not be listed on its outward payment or transfer list. This, it said, was because they were by law not allowed to take deposits.
But did Nibss delist these financial institutions, potentially affecting millions of their users in Nigeria? We checked.
Mobile money operators and microbanks not affected by Nibss change
The Nibss circular said financial institutions should “delist all Switches, Payment Solution Service Providers (PSSPs) and (Super agents) SAs” from their “NIP Outward Transfer channels only (not inwards)”.
NIP is the Nibss Instant Payments, a real-time payment service where the recipient receives funds immediately.
These categories are different from those listed in the Nibss communication.
Mobile money operators and microfinance banks are exempted because their licences allow them to hold customer funds.
In contrast, switches, PSSPs and SAs are not licensed to do so.
A presidential aide, Dada Olusegun, has also said the claims are fake.
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