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48% of banks’ PoS machines dormant — NIBSS

By on February 24, 2016

Forty-eight per cent of Point of Sale machines, acquired by the Deposit Money Banks and given to merchants and business outfits operating in the country in order to enhance the cashless policy, have become dormant, the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Plc has revealed.

The NIBSS was set up by the Central Bank of Nigeria and licensed commercial banks and discount houses in 1993 to help streamline inter-bank payments and settlement mechanisms, and to promote electronic payments in the country.

Speaking at a joint press conference with the CBN in Lagos on Monday, the Executive Director, Business, NIBSS, Mrs. Christabel Onyejekwe, said out of a total of 120,000 PoS machines in the country, only 62,000 were active, while a total of 100,000 terminals were already registered with the company.

Onyejekwe, who said the NIBSS was constantly in discussion with banks to get the 58,000 dormant PoS devices active, however stressed that electronic payment in the country was growing significantly following the introduction of various incentive schemes by the CBN in collaboration with the NIBSS.

She said, “Electronic payments have been growing significantly in Nigeria and this is really encouraging. In December 2015, we recorded 18 million transactions for that month alone. This is significant because 15 million transactions used to be the highest.

“The growth in e-payment is interesting. For PoS, we have grown from just 5000 active PoS terminals in 2012 to 62,000 currently and this is very significant.”

The NIBSS director said as part of the efforts to encourage the adoption of e-payment in the country, the CBN and the NIBSS would reward various categories of users of e-payment products on Thursday in Lagos.

The Managing Director, NIBSS, Mr. Ade Shonubi, said the award, tagged, ‘Electronic Payment Incentive Scheme Efficiency Awards’, was meant to boost the adoption of e-payment in the country.

According to him, the award will recognise all stakeholders in the e-payment scheme including banks, merchants and individuals.

Shonubi said the CBN and the NIBSS would continue to come up with various innovations that would enhance the use of e-payments in the country.

The Assistant Director, Banking and Payment Systems Department, CBN, Mr. Sola Agboola, expressed confidence that the e-payment adoption rate would continue to rise.

He said that the CBN was doing all it could to boost customer confidence and enhance the use of e-payment channels.

Responding to questions on the use of the various e-payment channels, Agboola disclosed that the CBN had sanctioned four banks for failing to install auto reversal device on their Automated Teller Machines terminals.

He said, “We discovered that many banks had customers’ money that were hanging in their books as a result of dispense error. We issued a circular and gave them an ultimatum that they should install a device that would automate reversal of transactions. A situation where customers have problems, and go to complain and the bank will not attend to them can no longer continue.

“That was why the CBN said they should install the auto reversal tool so that within 24 hours if there is any dispense error, the system will automatically revert it to the account of the customer. When we carried out our oversight function on the banks to ensure they have done so, four banks were penalised last year. Since then, things have changed.”