Nigeria:Guidelines for Licensing Super Agents Unveiled

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has released a draft framework for the licensing of super agents in the country.

As part of the document posted on the central bank’s website recently, the banking sector regular explained that any institution that wish to be licenced as a super agent should submit an application for approval to the central bank.

A super agent is an agent, under the agent banking system that has been contracted by the principal and thereafter may sub-contract other agents in a network while retaining overall responsibility for the agency relationship.

The central bank also stated that such an agent among other things, must be a company with an existing business, operational for at least 12 months, must be registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), must have a minimum shareholders’ fund unimpaired by losses of N50 million and must have a minimum of 50 agents.

However, all applications for super agent licence would be accompanied with board approval, certificate of incorporation, the company’s profile and functional contact e-mails, postal address and telephone numbers, memorandum and articles of association and shareholding structure of the consortium.

“The super agents’ platform shall be for the management and monitoring of the activities of their agents only and shall not hold electronic money value, whereas, the financial institution (FI) shall provide and operate the mobile money platform and hold electronic money value.
“A super agent’s platform shall be enabled to communicate with all its agents and have visibility of their mobile money transactions on the FI’s platform The FIs shall grant access to the super-agent to enable them have access to real-time information of its agents.

“A super agent’s platform shall integrate with that of the Nigerian Interbank Settlement System (NIBSS). For over-the-counter (OTC) transactions, the period for holding funds not withdrawn by a receiving customer shall be 30 days. Thereafter, it shall be reversed to the sender,” it stated.

Furthermore, the document explained that notifications sent to the receiving customer shall indicate the expiry date for the transaction.
Also, FIs shall be responsible for setting up dispute resolution mechanism for their agents to facilitate resolution of customers’ complaints.
“The FI shall treat and resolve any customer related issues within 72 hours. A super-agent shall facilitate the resolution of customer related issues. Other disputes from transactions apart from OTC shall be handled by the mobile money operators,” it stated.