E-Payment: How Nigeria Lost It’s Card System – Okonyia

A payment systems solution provider, Mr Robert Okonyia on Thursday explained how Nigeria lost its card payment system to foreign based institutions, adding that the … Continue reading E-Payment: How Nigeria Lost It’s Card System – Okonyia


A payment systems solution provider, Mr Robert Okonyia on Thursday explained how Nigeria lost its card payment system to foreign based institutions, adding that the Central Bank of Nigeria is culpable in the matter.

Speaking on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, Mr Okonyia stated that Nigeria lost its card system during the migration from magnetic stripe card system into EMV, . “We mortgaged the card technology into visa and master card. These are foreign card scheme providers” he said.

In trying to join the EMV card system which is controlled by foreign based institutions, “we lost our own card technology” Every commercial bank will have to become either an associate, affiliate, principal member”.

He added the CBN could have found means to check the spate of fraud which marred the era of the magnetic stripe cards “but the CBN didn’t look at it”.

He continued saying, “CBN never bothered to check – how do we create our own national card to migrate into the EMV”.

The establishment of a national card would enable citizens to transact and make exchanges outside the country as it can integrate with other networks the same way Visa and Master cards collaborated to form EMV.

He also raised the issue of the Naira not being a convertible currency as a result of restrictions by the government which is why Naira cannot be exchanged in other countries.

If you allow the outflow of Naira, it affects the foreign reserve hence the restriction. This is in a bid to improve the economy, he said.

EMV is a global standard for credit and debit payment cards based on chip card technology