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UBA exec: Kenya’s mobile money succeeded ‘because they are not as fraudulent as Nigerians’

UBA exec: Kenya’s mobile money succeeded ‘because they are not as fraudulent as Nigerians’

M-Pesa, the mobile money transfer service in Kenya has succeeded compared to Nigeria because Kenyans are not as “fraudulent” as Nigerians, Ebenezer Wey, Mobile Banking Manager at Nigerian bank, UBA, has told an international tech event.

Though Nigeria has introduced mobile phone-based money transfer service like Kenya, the local cashless service cannot compete with what Kenyans have done because ”Kenyans are not as fraudulent as Nigerians”, the UBA executive says.

Ebenezer Wey, Mobile Banking Manager UBA, who represented Dr. Yinka Adedeji, Directorate Head of Digital Banking at UBA said this in a presentation titled “How Cards and Mobile Can Drive Financial Inclusion” at the grand finale of the CBN Cashless CardExpo Africa 2016 held last week in Lagos.

Wey believes that for Nigeria to record unprecedented success in the mobile payment space, e-commerce merchants should provide a bouquet of solutions suiting the Nigerian environment.

Ebenezer Wey Mobile Banking Manager ,UBA
Ebenezer Wey of UBA seen speaking at the event            Photo by Kehinde Shonola of Technology Times

While comparing Kenyan’s M-Pesa success story with Nigeria mobile payment systems, he told attendees at the event that the Kenyan mobile payment system was devoid of fraud and irregularities.

“We use M-Pesa as an example and say we want to run mobile payment system in Nigeria. Have we thought about how their system works? How they think in Kenya? Kenyans do not think of how to defraud people. They are honest people”, Adedeji says.

According to him, the major impediments to the growth of mobile payment in Nigeria is the issue of trust and security , both sender and receiver want to be sure that their transactions are secure.

“Nigerian users need to be sure that when they are doing a mobile payment, their details are not being stolen by someone at the back-end and also that if his transaction does not go through, he will be refunded”, Wey says.

Cross section of the participants
Cross section of the participants at the CBN Cashless CardExpo Africa 2016 event

He also encouraged players in the mobile payment system to put more effort in educating the masses, stressing that many customers do not even know what mobile payment is all about, why they should engage in it or how they can protect themselves from fraudsters.

“e-Commerce merchants should make sure they educate their team who will in turn educate their customers. We have to educate the customers. Let them know it is possible to do these things without losing their money. Also, let them know how to prevent fraudsters from defrauding them”, he adds.

To deal with the issue of trust in the system, he says that “e-commerce merchants have to be honest with their customers. Let them know when there is a problem and exactly when it will be fixed. And also let them know when the problem is eventually fixed. That will help to build trust. That way, the customers will have confidence in the system.”

Also speaking at the event, Lola Masha, Country Manager, OLX, says that ”for e-commerce businesses to be successful in Nigeria, they have to be local and find solutions that adapt to the local market”, adding that the world is changing and going digital and Nigeria cannot afford to be left out.

Lola Masha, Country Manager, OLX
Lola Masha, Country Manager, OLX, speaking at the event

She also says her company is doing its part in trying to build trust in the system.

“We put products intervention in place to make sure that the item that customers want is actually what they get. So, before any ad goes live on OLX, it is reviewed by our agents who verify the item and users as well”, the OLX Country Manager says underscoring that the e-commerce company now has a system that users can report “any suspicious ad.”

According to Masha, “our agents inspect the item, make sure that it exists and that you are the rightful owner of the item.”


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Elizabeth Edozie Technology Journalist @Technology Times 08077671659 elizabeth.edozie@technologytimes.ng