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Mobile Money Charges Scrapped in Response to COVID-19

In the wake of preventing the spread of the new Coronavirus (Covid-19), Airtel in Uganda and Safaricom in Kenya have decided to waive their mobile money charges to encourage more people to use less physical exchange of money.

All M-Pesa transactions under USD 10 would be free for 90 days in Kenya and for Airtel, all transactions through Airtel Money will be free for 30 days. In Uganda, MTN waived charges for transfers below USD 7.7 for a period of 30 days and MTN CEO stated that there would be no charges from wallet to bank and vice versa.

This is a positive move in a bid to make transactions more convenient during this time of social distancing and restrictions against persons coming in close contact with each other. It will be interesting to see if Telcos in other countries like Tanzania, for example, will follow suit and encourage more mobile money transactions which will help in avoiding the spread of the COVID-19 virus. In Tanzania, so far, no mobile money charges have been removed by either Telcos or banks.

During this global pandemic that has cost the lives of thousands of people around the world and has decimated the global economy, it is good to see companies taking seriously their corporate social responsibility. A move that will benefit both them and the people they serve in the long term.

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