First National Bank Namibia’s cellphone banking services have been experiencing technical problems which FNB pinned on its partner MTC.
But while the matter appears to have been resolved, MTC on its part cleared itself from the blame saying that FNB should take responsibility for any fault relating to its product.
FNB customers have launched several complaints about not receiving notifications after having made transactions using cellphones. Some customers who bought electricity were not receiving their electricity tokens after using cellphones.
FNB Namibia Manager for Cellphone Banking and E-Wallet, Desery van Wyk told The Villager that the bank was aware of the problem but says the bank was not at fault as it is not responsible for cellphone messages.
“FNB was aware of this and the delivery of electricity tokens has been rectified. We are dependent on 3rd parties to deliver these sms’s and therefore have no control over the fact that messages are not always delivered on time,” she said.
Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC) Corporate Communications Personnel, John Ekongo however played it down saying the fault is with FNB’s services. “They must explain how the 3rd parties’ are at fault. It’s their product, they must account for their products,” he said.
Some customers even took it on social media to express their anger towards the system.
“FNB Namibia, it’s the third time I am buying electricity after hours or on a weekend, and I never get the number back. Is this some sort of ripping off you now do? And whenever I call to get my money back, no-one seems to have a clue about cellphone banking. This is becoming too much,” a customer posted on social media.
Another customer, Ndapanda, said she also experienced the same problem with the e-wallet service.
“Someone e-wallet me more than N$800 on the 1st of August but I never received a sms notifying me that I received the money. This is despite the fact that the amount indicated that it went off from the senders account. I was then only able to access my money after 10 days or so,” she said.
The bank says that there are measures in place to pick up any system delays and all parties involved worked around the clock to resolve the problem.
“We are happy to say that the service is stable. FNB has a rigorous and multi-layered approach to ensure that Cellphone Banking is safe. If customers do their part by not giving out any of their personal and banking information such as their PINs and passwords, there is no reason to worry that their money is not safe,” said van Wyk.
Van Wyk also said people must appreciate the safe and convenient services that comes with Cellphone Banking.
“Gone are the days of having to travel to a retail store to top-up your electricity meter when the lights go off, instead customers can recharge instantly using FNB Cellphone Banking, whilst standing in front of their meters,”
She added that Cellphone Banking allows customers to meet their traditional banking needs using their cellphones.