The Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) has directed banks to remove non-deposit-taking financial institutions from their transfer lists.
NIBBS said such institutions are not allowed to hold money but only process it.
It added that listing non-deposit-taking financial institutions contravenes the CBN guidelines on electronic payment of salaries, pensions, suppliers, and taxes in Nigeria dated February 2014.
Those affected by this directive include big players such as Interswitch, Flutterwave, Remita, eTranzact, and Paystack. Others include ChamsSwitch, Terra Switching and Processing, Appzone, Arca Payments Company, Coralpay, Habaripay, Hydrogen Payment Services, Network International, Unified Payment Services, and Xpress Payment Solutions.
In a circular to deposit money banks, merchant banks, switches, mobile money operators, and other financial institutions, financial institutions that are not permitted to hold money (non-deposit financial institutions) are to be removed to the list of NIBSS Instant Payment (NIP) Outwards System.
The non-deposit institutions listed are switches, payment solution service providers (PSSPs) and super agents
It said that while they can process outward transfers as inflows to banks, they are not to receive inflows as their licenses do not permit them to hold customers’ funds.
This means that PSSPs such as Flutterwave, Paystack and others listed above, which are payment gateways, should not be on the NIP outward list as they cannot hold deposits.
NIBBS referred to the CBN guidelines on electronic payment of salaries, pensions, suppliers, and taxes in Nigeria dated February 2014.
The guideline specifies the roles and responsibilities of various stakeholders involved in the end-to-end electronic payment process, such as paying organisations, payment beneficiaries, deposit money banks, other financial institutions, payment solution providers, transaction switching companies, and regulatory authorities.
According to the new licence categorisation for Nigerian payments systems issued by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on 9, 2020, payment system licensing was streamlined to just four broad categories.
Mobile money operators (MMO)
Switching and processing
Payment solution service (PSS): payment solution service provider (PSSP), payment terminal service providers (PTSP),
Out of these four categories, only MMOs are allowed to take deposits.
Speaking on the development, Moniepoint MFB clarified that the action in no way affected the company, as it did not fall under any of the categorises.
The firm in a mail to Jungle-Journalist.Com said “Moniepoint MFB is a CBN-licensed Microfinance Bank, and as such, we are a deposit-taking financial institution.
“There have been no disruptions to our services even as customers have continued to make and receive payments via our personal and business banking apps. We have not been delisted as the circular doesn’t concern or affect the Moniepoint MFB business.”