Network glitch: Poor internet speed impedes banking services

Several internet customers have continued to experience slow internet, as the quality of the service continues to impede banking transactions, across electronic banking platforms, and Automated Teller Machines (ATM), among others.

The slow internet speed, which was caused by damages done to the submarine cable system, “the West African Cable System (WACS)” on the high seas in Europe owned by MTN have affected a large number of subscribers that used the MTN telecommunications network in Nigeria and some other West African countries.

Meanwhile, MTN has 67 million internet users out of the 123 million users in Nigeria (38% market share), with the telecommunication company said to have connected about 53 million people to the internet.

Majority of telco’s customers have been experiencing challenges downloading and uploading content; some bank customers are faced with incomplete transaction processes, as various banking transactions that rely on the internet facility have remained poorly served in the past couple of days.

These challenges have forced some banks such as Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) to extend service hours at banking halls beyond the normal time, in a bid to manage the numerous customers that troop into the banking halls to resolve issues with their transactions or initiate transactions at the bank.

GTB in a text message to its customers said, “Dear Customer, we know you have experienced some inconvenience today using our banking channels. We sincerely apologise for the disruption in our service delivery to you, and we are extending banking hours at our branches till 6 pm today. Thank you for banking with us.”

The bank however stated in another text yesterday that its banking services had been restored. The text reads;

“All services on our banking channels have been restored. This means that normal service levels have been restored and you can now access all our banking services – online, via *737#, and in all our branches nationwide.

“We sincerely apologise for every inconvenience you may have experienced as a result of the service disruption on our banking channels today.”

According to Funso Aina, Senior Manager, External Relations MTN, disclosed that the challenge had been resolved with the WACS cable system and it was expected to take one or two weeks for services to come back fully.

“I can tell you that the matter has been resolved. That some banks are having issues may not necessarily have a link with the system. Some of the banks have been having issues long before the submarine cable challenge came up. But, from MTN end, we have resolved the matter. You also need to know that the cable in question is an international one. So, those challenges may not be from MTN,” Aina said.

“Let’s believe MTN has fixed the challenge, but just like a wound, it will not heal the same day; it will take some process. The WACS cable was damaged, they have fixed it, but it will take some time for things to be restored back to normal,” Kehinde Aluko, telcoms expert said.

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