Mobile money operators like Safaricom (M-Pesa) and banks are now free to continue collecting fees made on transactions between their platforms.
This is after the High Court declined to extend a freeze on the application of the transaction fees that it had ordered last month.
The bank-to-M-Pesa and vice-versa transaction charges resumed on January 1st after the financial services industry regulator, the Central Bank of Kenya, in consultation with the various players, agreed to lower them from where they were before the COVID-19 pandemic.
The pandemic’s onset resulted in various measures being taken to ease up the burden of its effects on individual users and businesses, leading to the suspension of the charges.
In the case, that remains ongoing, the applicant, Moses Wafula, is seeking orders for the suspension and complete withdrawal of the charges arguing that they ought to be shouldered by the banks as mobile money operator’s clients and not the end users.
The judge had issued temporary orders stopping the application of the transaction charges pending the hearing of the lodged suit yesterday, January 23rd.
Banks defied the suspension, citing the lack of directions from the industry regulator since they were not enjoined in the suit, and continued to levy the charges.
According to the Business Daily, “Justice Mugure Thande declined to extend the freeze saying Safaricom and the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) were not yet parties in the case.”
So, until further notice, the charges, which we have covered in the articles below, continue applying: