Kenyans ignore government call for cashless transactions
Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe has warned Kenyans against the dangers of using cash for transactions, despite several calls urging them to use mobile money, as a means of combating coronavirus.
The CS wondered why the use of cash in business transactions continues widely, even though mobile money operators have made it easier for such transactions.
“We have noted with concern that people continue to disregard this advice,” Kagwe said on Friday.
Kagwe said, physical money presents surfaces that can very easily be contaminated with the virus.
The government of Kenya has been encouraging Kenyans to use cashless transactions as a way of curbing the spread of the virus, as transmission of Covid-19 from one person to the other can also be done through the handling of physical cash.
Safaricom became the first player in the mobile money business to lower the cost of mobile money transactions following a request from President Uhuru Kenyatta.
These included free person-to-person transactions of below Sh1,000.
Small and micro business enterprises (SMEs) using M-Pesa were allowed a higher limit of Sh150,000 daily transactions, up from the current Sh70,000.
Kenyans now can also transact up to Sh300,000, up from the current limit of Sh140,000, and hold up to Sh300,000 in their M-Pesa wallets.
The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) Governor Patrick Njoroge also directed all banks in Kenya to quarantine cash for a week to reduce the spread of coronavirus.
World Health Organisation (WHO) said the infectious Covid-19 virus could be carried on the surface of banknotes for several days.