04.11.2023 Feature Article

Moniepoint , Criminalizing FINTECH Solutions in Nigeria

Moniepoint , Criminalizing FINTECH Solutions  in Nigeria
04.11.2023 LISTEN

Moniepoint is one of the Microfiance Banks in Nigeria authorized to deal with digital online financial exchange and transfer services in Nigeria but they are gradually, just like their other counterparts, criminalizing the Fintech solutions in Nigeria..

Moniepoint as a Fintech body existed before the introduction of the politically motivated cashless policy in Nigeria. Then this organization which started in 2015 as aback end service provider to banks, had increased volumes of transactions, which I was told , could reach $ 200 billion dollars in transaction volume annually.

While Nigerians groaned under the ill-timed and ill-fated CBN Cashless policy, Fintech bodies like Moniepoint, Opay, Smartcash etc came to the rescue and saved people from endless wait at banks to collect their hard earned money.

The bank transfer services in the banking system was overloaded, and Moniepoint smiled to the bank with their own share of the transfer charges.and other services. Many pharmacies, super stores and markets used Moniepoint for ease of payment.

However, it is obvious that in Nigeria, everything started with good intention will be used by agents of darkness to defraud people of their earnings.

Moniepoint, despite whichever technology it uses for its services, has behaved the way Nigerians act whenever the end users of any product are helpless and without choice,, and government regulations.

Many people have complained that transactions hat was outed through Moinepoint and Declined were reversed in six, seven, eight months after numerous visits to the banks. . I was part of a transaction that took place in Fwebruary, but was reversed sometime in July, after I threatened to report thje operations manager of the bank to both the EFCC and Central Bank of Nigeria. The lead time for all my transaction to be reversed is four months. Many people have numerous complaints to make and nobody cares about them.

Though I understood they said they are scaling up the system to account for volumes of transactions, it is no more acceptable that in July, August, September, October and November, Moniepoint and other Fintech bodies cannot modernize and ensure that failed transactions are reversed within twenty four hours.

I would like to simplify these operations, devoid of technical language, so that the common man can understand.

Moniepoint detains customer funds in the name of ‘Failed Transactions’ ‘Declined Transactions’ etc. Technically, that money goes into Moniepoint , Opay Account en-route the recipient bak . Once a transaction fails, the Commercial Bank Intermediary fails to receive the Credit Alert. Itb is removed from customer account and deposited into Moniepoint Account with the affected financial institution.

Technically, that fund is trapped fund. The Fintech group can avail themselves of such funds, pending resolution with the Payee Bank. The longer time it takes the better for the issuing Fintech and Payee Banks.

Moniepoint should have an Algorithm whereby any failed transaction is resolved within 24 hours and reversed back to the customer.

The technology is such that failed transactions or items listed as failed declined or whatever, are either reversed automatically, or within a specified time. A Fintech body can progamme its system to collate all failed receipts at the end of the day, and auto reverse, or be reversed by an auditor who takes note of the volume and the amount and other banking details and segmentations for documentary purposes.

However, I have noted that these financial criminalsm in order to make use of customer funds fo a little while, purposely elongate the period of resolution of failed dispute.

There are many disputes I have abandoned because the amount seems insignificant to me. People have abandoned N5, 000, N10,000, n20,000 , etc to Moniepoint and the Payee Banks. A friend abandoned N50,000 because she has no time to pursue the reversal . Al these small amounts when aggregated, l amounts to billions of naira monthly. It is fraud. It is criminal enterprise using Fintech technology.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission EFCC, Independent Corrupt Practices Commission ICPC and Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria FRCN should investigate Moniepoint and their colleagues, interrogate the technology that allows Nigerians to be stranded after failed transactions, and spend whole days, weeks and months resolving issues that could take hours or at most 24 hour to resolve. There are auto reverse mechanisms and technology that could be incorporated to ease business.

It was reported that Nigeria has about $ 10 billion dollars unresolved transaction issues, wihin six months of 2023 and it is too much for an economy seeking more financial inclusion.

Moniepoint, despite the ease it brought to the payment system in Nigeria, is acting like a criminal mafia group in its approach to resolution of failed transactions , causing Nigerians to lither the Customer Care of Banks for both significant and insignificant sums.and the writer, Obinna Akukwe has no apologies my conclusions.

Obinna Akukwe, Columnist, Financial and IT Consultant, @obinnaakukwe, [email protected]