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Relief as NCC orders service providers to stop USSD charges for banking services

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Nigerians would be relieved big time as the Nigerian Communications Commission has ordered all telecommunications services providers in the country to desist from charging customers who use USSD to carry out banking transactions.

TheNewsGuru (TNG) reports Henry Nkemadu, NCC Director, Public Affairs made this known in a statement on Tuesday, stressing that consumers already pay a service charge to the financial service providers for financial transactions carried out through USSD channels.

The statement reads: “The Nigerian Communications Commission hereby notifies consumers of telecommunications services and the general public of the immediate suspension of End User Billing for financial transactions through USSD channel by all service providers.

“Consumers already pay service charge to the Financial Service Providers for financial transactions carried out through USSD channels. It is therefore expected that this charge should factor in the cost of use of the Telecom Operators’ critical network resources.

“Therefore, Direct End User Billing by Network Operators for this service would result in double charges for a single transaction. This will inhibit the actualization of the Federal Government’s financial inclusion target of 80% by the year 2020.

“In line with the Nigerian Communications Act .3, which mandates the Commission amongst other things to protect, inform and educate the consumers, the Commission hereby directs the suspension with immediate effect of end user Billings for Financial Transactions through USSD Channels by Service Providers.

“In view of this, all Telecom Service Providers are hereby directed to immediately comply. To this end, Financial Service Providers are hereby notified of the Commission’s position”.

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