MTN Insists On Slashing Banks Commission On USSD

Yemisi Izuora
MTN, has vowed to effect a reduction in the commission due to banks for the Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) service.
After initial face off, the banks reconnected MTN customers to their channels on Sunday; having earlier blocked them from using the service.
The development came after MTN had reduced the commission due to the banks from 4.5 per cent to 2.5 per cent.
Subsequently, the banks rejected the action asking MTN to revert to status quo and threatened to bar MTN customers from using the service and banking apps; a move they followed up with on Friday.
MTN responded by connecting its customers to fintech platforms such as Kuda, OPay, Carbon and Flutterwave, among others.
To create a mutually beneficial atmosphere the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, with other stakeholders made a quick intervention prompting MTN to revise to the 4.5 per cent commission.
The banks had reconnected the telco’s customers to their channels but a meeting is set to be held between the telco and the lenders where a potential reduction in the USSD charges would be discussed.
This was confirmed in a letter signed by MTN’s Chief Executive Officer, Karl Toriola,
and addressed to the Chairman of Body of Banks CEOs, Herbert Wigwe.
The letter revealed that the meeting would be held on Tuesday.
“In an attempt to resolve the current USSD recharge impasse, given the intervention of our regulators, we hereby agree that the banks revert to the status quo of 4.5 per cent commission. However, the banks and MTN Communications Nigeria Plc shall sit to agree on various options that will result in the reduction in the costs on 6th of April 2021,’’ the letter read in part.

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