Traders and service providers are protesting against mobile-based transaction charges. The government encourages the use of cashless payment systems to stop the spread of Covid-19, which has seen telecommunication companies issue mobile money codes, through which traders can be paid on the services or commodities that clients have purchased to minimises the use of the hard currencies.
At the beginning telcos were not charging traders transaction charges, but they have since issued a notice that effective September 1, the traders will be charged with 0.5 percent of the total amount as transaction charges “These charges of using the service is high given the fact that it is applied on every single transaction made,” Emmanuel Ndacyayisenga, a shopkeeper in Gikondo suburb, in Kigali City.
“We have initially adopted the service after being consulted and educated about what it meant for, but we have not being communicated about how much we will buy it or be paying to use it,” Ndacyayisenga added.
At the height of Covid-19 infections, the central bank directed that cashless payments to be made available with zero charges on all transfers between bank accounts and mobile wallets, zero charges on all mobile money transfers, zero fees on payments for point-of-sale transactions and an increase in the limit for individual transfers using mobile money wallets.
Implementation of a Rwandan cashless economy initially received resistance from consumers and merchants due to transaction fees levied.