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Kenyan Network Operator Safaricom Saving Kenyans

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Mobile money transfer has revolutionized the way Kenyans transact their money. Before the inception of M-pesa, Airtel money, Yu cash, and Orange money, many Kenyans had to contend with queuing in banks to deposit or withdraw money. Not only that, many other cash transactions like paying electricity bills, water bills, school fees, paying salaries, depositing or withdrawing from one’s account, sending or receiving money from overseas among other payments required one to go to a bank, Sacco or payment offices to transact. Nowadays, this is a thing of the past as all these transactions are done through mobile money transfer.

Statistics from Central Bank show that Kenyans last year transacted more than Sh1.5 trillion using mobile money transfer services.   Mobile phone money transfer services have grown by almost 31%, Top on this list being Safaricom’s M-pesa service which is popular with many Kenyans and available countrywide with almost 16 million Kenyans now using this service. M-pesa agents are strategically positioned in many places country wide making it easy for transactions to take place. Statistics further show that the number of agents for all mobile money transfer networks is 76,912 more than half of them being from Safaricom. The mobile money transfer platforms from all providers moved about 575 million money transfer messages worth Sh1.53 trillion representing an increase of 32.8 per cent and 31.5 per cent in volume and value respectively compared to 2011. A big percentage of this being from Safaricom’s M-pesa.

Safaricom’s Okoa Jahazi service that allows one to borrow emergency credit and repay within three days also has good news for its users. It has extended the repayment period for emergency credit by 24 hours, meaning prepaid customers can now repay after four days. Users who access this service were notified via text of this good news.

Okoa Jahazi service was launched in April 2009 to save many especially poor Kenyans who in one way or another find themselves in a tight corner and need to make an emergency call. The service also comes in handy when is not doing well financially. One is allowed to borrow up to Kshs. 100 and now repay within four days. Failure to repay by a subscriber means that one cannot access the service for a period of 14 days. Safaricom recently launched M-shwari a service that allows a subscriber to save with Safaricom then borrow a loan from the same service and repay within 30 days.  Safaricom also allows subscribers to redeem their data bundles known as bonga points and make off-net calls a service that was previously restricted to on-net calls.

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