Electronic payment stakeholders have urged central bank of Nigeria (CBN) to urgently review its guideline on the use of point of sale (PoS) terminal in the country.The present CBN guideline on the use of PoS does not allow the use of the terminal as transaction means by mobile money or SANEF agents but a payment means.
This has become necessary in view of its adoption by mobile money and SANEF agents as transaction means for their business.According to Tunde Ogungbade, managing director, Global Accelerex, “ PoS from the onset did not have agent network business objective. What we hope to address that was mobile money network, but that did not take off as anticipated and PoS became a mistake that then became a reality for agent business. It was not a transaction set, designed for agents but agents adopted it which is how we think about technology.
“Technology always goes ahead of regulator. This is not a technology innovation but a process innovation on the part of indigenous Nigerians who are agents that started thinking on how to solve a problem. Innovation in process is what got us to this stage of using PoS for agent working business, we are grateful for that and now we must find a way to make it viable,” he said.
Victor Olojo, national president, Association of Mobile Money Agents of Nigeria (AMMAN), responded that: “based on reality in the market at the moment, majority of the terminals deployed in the market recognise PoS for merchant service, which is for purchases.
“Most of PoS terminals in the market are configured for purchases at merchant locations, and not for mobile money agents, the options that PoS give are for payment of goods and services.
“From the back end, what NIBSS sees is that this customer has paid for a service and not necessarily cash in, cash out. When PoS were introduced into Nigerian market agents where not factored in, that is why they say that PoS do not recognise agent business. A core agent business captures three basic business activities: namely, cash in, cash out and bill payment.
“Over 90 per cent of terminals in the market do one thing and that is purchase, there is nothing like cash in, cash out or bill payment. More needs to be done to ensure that PoS terminals recognise agent business because, majority of PoS terminal in the market today are been used by mobile money agents when the functionality does not suit them.
“Cash in and cash out can be incorporated into PoS terminal. I’m aware that industry stakeholders such as NIBSS, CBN and Banks are already working out a frame work to ensure that functionalities of PoS terminals are built in a way that it will address agent business. This will help SANEF initiative to achieve financial inclusion objective of central bank of Nigeria,” he added.