Following the suspension of the banks’ Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) on its platform, MTN Nigeria has announced a list of alternative channels through which subscribers can purchase airtime and access other financial transactions on its network.
The alternative channels were announced in a statement signed by Funso Aina, MTN’s Senior Manager, External Relations, on Saturday.
Millions of phone users have been unable to purchase MTN airtime via the USSD platform of banks and their banking mobile apps since Friday following the abrupt non-availability of the service.
But according to Aina, MTN customers can purchase airtime and conduct all other financial transactions on its network via three designated USSD codes, two websites and six third-party apps.
He explained that the apps can be downloaded from various app stores.
The statement read: “Y’ello,
“Please note that as follow-up to your story on the ‘MTN vs Banks’ USSD matter, it will interest you to note that for the benefit of our customers who have been greatly inconvenienced by the service suspension, we now have alternative channels of accessing MTN services electronically.
“Below is the list and links to access the various alternative platforms:
“1. MTN On Demand is on *904# and also via https://mtnondemand.flutterwave.com;
“2. Barter By Flutter Wave is an app that can be downloaded here: http://tosto.re/getbarter;
“3. Jumia Pay (app);
“4. OPay (app);
“5. MTN Xtratime airtime loans (*606#);
“6. Carbon (app);
“7. Kuda (app);
“8. BillsnPay (web https://www.billsnpay.com/. They also have an app);
“9. myMTN Web http://mymtn.com.ng;
“10. Momo agent *223#
“The Apps can be downloaded from the Playstore and the Appstore.”
According to a source in the telecoms industry, who spoke exclusively to Newsbreak on Friday, the banks were the ones that single-handedly suspended the various USSD payment options without informing the telecom operators, partly due to the lingering N42 billion owed by the former and which they have refused to pay.
The source said MTN was forced to send a message to its subscribers due to the sudden unavailability of the USSD service, adding that the banks are trying to shift the payment of the debt on to customers through the new N6.98 service charge for each USSD transaction, as announced in a joint statement by the NCC and CBN on 16 March.
Isa Ali Pantami, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, had in a Twitter post late Friday said he has waded in the standoff between banks and MTN Nigeria, assuring that the USSD service will soon be restored.