FINANCIAL INCLUSION: USING MOBILE PHONES TO PROVIDE BANKING SOLUTION TO THE UNDER-BANKED IN NIGERIA
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Mobile banking system as an innovative product of commercial banks and telecommunication companies has become an important practice in Nigeria. The introduction of this phoning banking system has improve banking efficiency in rendering services to customer, as a result, the study examined inclusive financial solution: using mobile phones to provide financial solutions to the “unbanked”. The study adopted a quota sampling technique, data was collected by means of questionnaires from the residents of Ikorodu North Local Government Area and its outskirts (i.e. the villages and remote areas surrounding that axis) – 700; the staff of the MTN Mobile Nigeria Limited,Lagos office – 300; and collaborative staff of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc., Lagos head office – 300. The result shows that mobile banking does provide financial solution to the “unbanked” in Nigeria. Hence, there is a strongly positive relationship between independent and dependent variables. In other words, mobile banking is a reliable and efficient means through which the “unbanked” are being provided with financial solutions.
To this end, it is hereby recommended that mobile communication industries (e.g.MTN Mobile Money) in collaboration with banking organizations should endeavour to make available to low income earners, especially the “unbanked” or “under-served”affordable mobile phones enabled with modern internet access and gadgets. Similarly, network providers should endeavour to extend their network services to the inward parts of the rural areas, by planting their masts in all strategic areas of villages surrounding Nigeria so as to ensure effectiveness of this innovation. Subsequently, banking organisations are advised to reduce their charges and fees so as to encourage the fearful “unbanked” open accounts and continue to enjoy banking products and services, so as to impact better on their lives through mobile phone system of banking of providing financial solutions and that difficult application processes and procedures for account opening through mobile banking should be simplified in order to accommodate the stark illiterate among them.
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