About PAPSS

The Pan-African Payment and Settlement System – PAPSS – enables the efficient flow of money securely across African borders, minimising risk and contributing to financial integration across the regions.

Whether shopping, transferring money, paying salaries, dealing in stocks and shares or making high-value business transactions, PAPSS’ real-time infrastructure provides a reliable, cost-effective answer for instant payments.

PAPSS works in collaboration with Africa’s central banks to provide a payment and settlement service to which commercial banks, payment service providers and fintechs across the region can connect as ‘Participants’.

At a time when cross-border trading is high on the agenda with the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement now a reality, PAPSS is primed to facilitate the expected increased volumes in cross-border payments.

Our story

PAPSS is the brainchild of Afreximbank, Africa’s pre-eminent trade finance institution, whose mission includes stimulating the expansion, diversification and development of African trade.

Afreximbank recognised that for Africa to unlock its massive potential for internal trade, enabling the efficient flow of transactions across African borders was of paramount importance.

The key is a single payment infrastructure that cuts through the existing challenges of local currency exchange and ensures instant payment of funds.

Making PAPSS a reality

Since the Bank was inaugurated in 1993, it has built a presence in 52 member countries and, today is supporting trade finance activities in Africa through its relationships with other banks, financial institutions and export credit agencies. The Bank is also on a mission to become a Centre of Excellence, promoting and utilising cutting-edge research and knowledge to benefit African trade, market access and economic development.

Afreximbank has been at the forefront of developing PAPSS, providing capital and resource investment. As the continent’s trade finance bank, it has mobilised broad support for the system and, in collaboration with the regions’ central banks, together they are establishing a continental financial market infrastructure for commercial banks, payment service providers, card schemes and other intermediaries. These connections will enable cross-border financial transactions to happen in real-time and in local currency as well as ensure coordinated end-of-the-day net settlement with all the participating central banks. Afreximbank is also instrumental in the organisation and governance of PAPSS.

A fusion of ancient and modern

In days gone by, the cowrie shell was a means of payment and a symbol of wealth and power, accepted across much of Africa. From AD 8 until the last century, the hard, white snail shell was the perfect currency – lightweight, hard-wearing, instantly recognisable, easy to count and difficult to forge.

To create larger denominations of value the shells were threaded onto strings and for even larger payments, would be thrown into a basket and weighed.

For centuries the cowrie co-existed, particularly across West Africa, alongside other forms of currency, such as silver coins, gold dust, salt bars, brass and copper rods, horseshoe-shaped manillas (bracelets), cloth and beads. Subsequently, this humble shell wove itself into the very culture of the continent and thereby lies its legacy; while some of the European colonialists tried to foist their own currencies on Africans, the cowrie shell continued to be accepted as legal tender into the twentieth century – even along the rich trade routes of eighteenth-century western Africa.

It’s a fitting tribute then to the cowrie shell that it has inspired the modern PAPSS logo. The shell takes centre stage and is surrounded by radial lines signifying the connectivity between the technology of the PAPSS digital platform and the key partnerships that enable the payment system.

Governing PAPSS

PAPSS is governed in accordance with the PAPSS Bye-Laws, the overarching framework for the operation and governance of the payment and settlement system. The Bye-Laws put into practice the PAPSS Scheme Rules and technical standards essential for facilitating a reliable, stable and effective international payment system.

PAPSS Governing Council

Based on powers derived from its Treaty, Afreximbank has established the PAPSS Governing Council (‘PGC’). The PGC has been established to provide oversight and regulation of PAPSS.

Governor Godwin Emefiele

Chairperson
Central Bank of Nigeria

Governor Louncey Nabe

Member
Central Bank of Guinea

Governor Kelfala Kallon (Current Chair Committee of Governors)

Member
Central Bank of Sierra Leone

Governor Jolue Aloysius Tarlue

Member
Central Bank of Liberia

Governor Ernest Addison

Member
Central Bank of Ghana

Governor Bakary Jammeh

Member
Central Bank of Gambia

Representiative from Afreximbank (Andrew Gamble)

Member
Afreximbank

Representiative from AfDB

Non-Voting Member
AfDB

Representiative from African Union

Non-Voting Member
African Union

Head of PAPSS

Non-Voting Member
Afreximbank

BOSE

Secretariat
Afreximbank

Secretary General – AfCFTA (Wamkele Mene)

Non-Voting Member
AfCFTA Secretariat

Secretary General – AACB (Papa Lamine Diop)

Non-Voting Member
AACB

PAPSS Management Board

The PAPSS Management Board (‘PMB’) is the controlling body responsible for the technical and operational management of PAPSS. The PMB is entrusted with strategy, financial management, succession planning, stakeholder management and sustainability of PAPSS.

President Benedict Oramah

Chairman

H.E Governor Godwin Emefiele

Member

Arnold Ekpe

Member

Representative of Afreximbank – Ex-officio

Member

Mr. Marcel Kodjo

Member

Kofi Adomakoh

Member

Sitoyo Lopokoiyit

Member

Marlene Ngoyi

Member

Rami Aboul Naga

Member

Jeremy Light

Member

Arunma Oteh

Member

Mike Ogbalu

Member

PAPSS Management Team

The management team is led by the Chief Executive Officer and Deputy Chief Executive Officer of PAPSS.

Mike Ogbalu III

CEO

Mike Ogbalu III

CEO

Mike Ogbalu III, as he is known in professional circles, is an Electrical/Electronic Engineer and a Fellow of The International Academy of Cards and Payments with an MBA from the prestigious Lagos Business School. He has more than eight years of sound IT industry experience in planning, deployment and management of enterprise-wide infrastructure, as well as more than 15 years’ banking experience in Retail Banking, Commercial Banking and E-Business. He spent the last six years in Payments and Technology. His roles ranged from team membership to group leadership to Chief Executive.

Mike joined Interswitch Group initially as Divisional CEO – Interswitch Financial Inclusion Services where he was responsible for driving a mandate to create the largest agent network and thereby becoming a prime facilitator of financial inclusion in Nigeria. As Chief Executive Officer of Verve International, he was responsible for making Africa’s most successful card scheme truly pan-African and expanding its footprint globally.

Today, as CEO of PAPSS, he is overseeing the building of a continent-wide payment infrastructure that will help to accelerate trade on the continent.

Significant achievements include: managing the implementation of a range of card products; leadership role in UBA’s e-banking infrastructure consolidation; impressive management of a small business group profit centre; and the repositioning of UBA Group’s Remittances portfolio to achieve industry leadership. Mike managed the E-Business Group of Afribank (now Polaris Bank) and represented Afribank on the boards of Valucard Nigeria (now UPSL) and ATMC. Mike was recognised with the award of Card Personality of Year 2012 for his work at Ecobank. He is currently a board member of the mobile payments scheme board, an advisory board member of the Bridge International Academies and a Grand Patron of IAMCP-WIT Nigeria (International Association of Microsoft Channel Partners – Women In Technology).

John Bosco Sebabi

Deputy Chief Executive

John Bosco Sebabi

Deputy Chief Executive

John Bosco Sebabi is the Deputy Chief Executive of the Pan-African Payment and Settlement System (PAPSS).

John Bosco holds a MSc in International Economics, Banking and Finance from Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales (UK), a BSc in Economics and an Associate degree in Economics, both completed with distinctions from the University of Rwanda (formerly the National University of Rwanda) and a certificate in Financial Programming and Policy from the IMF. John Bosco is also a fellow of the Fletcher Leadership Program for Financial Inclusion of the Fletcher School, Tufts University. He also holds an executive education certificate of the Advanced Management Program (AMP), a sandwich programme from three prestigious universities: Strathmore, Lagos and IESE business schools.

John Bosco comes with more than 20 years’ experience in the financial sector and was, until joining Afreximbank, a consultant with the World Bank on the establishment of the Africa Wide Payment Platform. John Bosco is the former chairman of the Rwanda Airports Company, the Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (formerly the PTA Bank), vice-chairman of Cogebanque and, to date, serves on the Board of Bralirwa and BancABC Botswana.

From July 2014 to October 2018 John Bosco served as the Deputy Director General of the Rwanda Social Security Board, in charge of funds management, managing assets over $1 billion in value.

Between March 2013 and April 2014, he was the CEO for the East Africa Commodity Exchange, which is mandated to uplift national and regional economies by eliminating market barriers to trading, providing access to financing for farmers and traders in return for commodities, and more broadly engaging in regional capital market development.

Prior to this, John Bosco was the Director General of the Operations Directorate at the National Bank of Rwanda, where he had a successful career spanning 13 years. He joined the bank as a Foreign Exchange Analyst and rapidly progressed to Director, Payment Systems, and to Director General, Operations. In this position, he was charged with the responsibility of providing executive leadership over three functions: currency and banking operations management, payment systems and financial markets. He oversaw the implementation of monetary policy decisions, managing the country’s reserves, overseeing sale of government debt, providing banking services to the government and other public entities, guiding the development of the payments and securities settlement systems, and currency management. One of his notable achievements was spearheading the bank’s payment systems modernisation programme, notably, the implementation of the Rwanda Integrated Payments Processing System (RIPPS), the Central Securities Depository, mobile payments, and remittances.

As a seasoned banker, John Bosco has served as a key resource person on several boards, committees and task forces. He was a member of the G25 Panel of experts that was constituted by the World Bank to set guidelines for successful regional integration of financial infrastructures. Outside work, he is an ardent squash player, swimmer and golfer. He is married with two daughters.

Monica Oraro

Manager of Product and Business Development

Monica Oraro

Manager of Product and Business Development

Monica has over 12 years’ experience in managing the transformation and enhanced usage of payment systems at a global, regional and national level. Prior to joining PAPSS, she worked at the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) where she was responsible for developing and implementing national and regional payment system policies and systems to improve market access and ease of trade in Kenya, East Africa and the COMESA regions.

Her achievements include building SWIFT Governance for the Central Bank of Kenya and the Kenyan financial industry; being nominated to the ‘African Emerging Leaders Programme’ at the Egyptian Banking Institute; creating a regulatory framework for National Payment Systems in Kenya; managing integration of securities and retail payments to Kenya’s Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) system; and being appointed to CBK’s Financial Innovation and Inclusion Team as policy recommendation lead.

Monica holds an MSc in Computer Science from University College London and Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Pharmacology from the University of Edinburgh.

Ositadimma Ugwu

Head of Technology and Operations

Ositadimma Ugwu

Head of Technology and Operations

Ositadimma is a Senior Technology Executive and Transformational IT leader with over 18 years of experience in Technology Deployment, Strategy and Management of Technology Operations. He has led major technology initiatives while working for multinationals including IBM and Dell, supporting the top-100 organisations in the FSI & Telecoms sector across Africa and the Middle East.

With over a decade of banking experience, Ositadimma has led multinational teams deploying cutting-edge technology and supporting operations for First Bank of Nigeria, Standard Bank, Ecobank and Union Bank of Nigeria. Before his current role as Head of Technology and Operations for PAPSS, he led the IT Infrastructure & Business Applications/Operations of First Bank of Nigeria with responsibility for numerous digital technology initiatives and business application support across the Bank and its subsidiaries.

Ositadimma holds an MSc in Information Technology from the University of Liverpool in the United Kingdom, an MBA from the University of Lagos and a B.Sc. in Computer Science from the University of Nigeria.

Papa Samba Thiongane

Manager of Digital Communications

Papa Samba Thiongane

Manager of Digital Communications

Papa Samba, a digital marketing and communications expert, began his career 11 years ago as Digital Project Manager at Geoxia Group in France.

Most of his experience then followed at PI Group, a leading consortium of agencies (People Input, Voice Africa, Dentsu) in Sub Saharan Francophone Africa, where he held several positions: Digital Consultant (2013), Digital Product Manager (2014), Country Development Director (2016), Digital Director (2018) and Director, Digital & Strategy (2020). He also managed and developed the activities of the Abidjan and Douala branches.

He has built, designed and launched multiple communications campaigns that added real value to sales and branding across a range of sectors including telecoms, FMCG, banking, insurance, fintech and NGOs.

Papa Samba holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Institut Supérieur de Management (ISM) in Senegal, a Master’s degree in Marketing & Sales from Ecole Supérieure de Gestion (Paris) and a Master’s degree in Digital Innovation from PPA Business School in France.

Noel Adja

Assistant Manager Participants & Membership Management

Noel Adja

Assistant Manager Participants & Membership Management

For more than three years Noel Adja worked for Standard Chartered Bank, where he held various position. He started his journey with Standard chartered Bank as client onboarding and account maintenance specialist for corporate and institutional clients. He also worked as Analyst client delivery (Integrated Middle Office) and Associate, Client delivery (Integrated Middle Office) in corporate and institutional banking. During his career at Standard Chartered bank, Noel Adja has spent 8 months completing a short-term assignment as credit analyst in corporate and institutional banking.  Prior to that, he worked as Banking Consultant for Halifax and as a Customer Service Assistant for Lloyds Bank. He is currently working for the Pan-African Payment and Settlement System (PAPSS) as Assistant Manager Participants & Membership Management.

Noel holds Master’s degree in International Business Law (LLM) and Master’s degree in International Business and Management (MSc) from the University of Bedfordshire in the UK. He also holds a BA in Law from the Catholic University of West Africa.

Gloria Atanga

Team Support

Gloria Atanga

Team Support

Gloria Atanga is the Team Support for PAPSS. She is a graduate from the prestigious CASS Business School where she holds an MSc in International Business in addition to a BSc in International Finance from the American University of Paris (AUP). Gloria has experience with the United Bank for Africa (UBA), Bank of Central African States (BEAC Head Office) and AXA Insurance where she interned as Account Manager, Credit Risk Analyst and Manager’s Assistant respectively. Gloria founded Inspire Africa; the first club dedicated to Africa at AUP. She later received the award of “Club Leader of the Year” and the club under her supervision was awarded “Club of the Year”. Beyond her keen interests in leadership and questions of development in Africa, Gloria is passionate about tennis, which she has practiced for more than a decade.