Happening now: Banks commence N6.98 charge per USSD Transaction

Nigerian Banks have commenced implementation of the N6.98 Charge per USSD Transaction as part of the agreement reached with deposit money banks, following a disagreement between banks and telecom firms over USSD and other text message transaction requests.

Recall that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had on 11th March, 2021 announced that "effective March 16, 2021, USSD services for financial transactions conducted at DMBs (Deposit Money Banks) and all CBN-licensed institutions will be charged at a flat fee of N6.98 per transaction".

According to the Apex Bank, the charge was part of the agreements after banks and telecommunication operators met to discuss the ₦42bn debt owed to mobile operators by banks.

The charge is expected to be withdrawn from users’ bank accounts and remitted to mobile network operators, who provide infrastructure for the service to operate.

RelatedBreaking: Nigerians to pay N6.98 per USSD Financial Service Transaction - CBN

Many users of USSD services in Nigeria on Friday have started to see a notice to pay N6.98 for each transaction session.

“Welcome to USSD Banking. Please note, a N6.98 network charge will be applied to your account for banking services on this channel,” one notice said.

USSD is a critical channel for delivering financial services, especially for those who do not have access to physical banking infrastructure or internet services.

Many Nigerians have raised concern over the recent development, bearing the present economic condition of the country in mind.

CBN and NCC had however in a joint statement in March notified the general public that the USSD channel is optional, as several alternative channels such as mobile apps, internet banking and ATMs may be used for financial transactions.

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