A serious glitch in the MPESA transaction is threatening the economy and stability of the country.
Though not new, this is the only time it has happened d en masse. The worst part is that for a second time in a row, we noticed that Safaricom didn’t find it responsible to inform their clients.
People were left to grapple with the inefficient Safaricom customer service to try to reverse their money.
Moving on, the issue is that, a client reported a problem with some transactions that has caused him so much pain.
Good morning Cyprian, There’s a problem with Mpesa and they have not communicated this to us. I went to hospital this morning and paid via till number. I did the first transaction but the pop up message didn’t come, and I also didn’t receive the Mpesa message for close to 10 minutes. I assumed the transaction hadn’t gone through because when I checked my balance, all was okay. So I did the second transaction. This time round I got the confirmation message almost instantly. I left for my house. 1 hour later, I’m getting another message that my first transaction went through. So they have debited my account twice. The same has happened again when I was buying airtime for someone this morning. Double transactions initiated. I have called there customer service and they say there’s a problem with their system but they not yet sent out a communication to their customers. See attached screenshots.
Safaricom – MPESA split
The fact that the Telco has grown too big to handle or manage properly, and therefore threatens the stability of the country, has been debated severally.
Every time the matter comes before parliament, it is defeated.
The last time a serious debate was to take place in Parliament is August 2021. But the mover of the motion, Gem MP Elisha Odhiambo went missing and the bill was defeated.
The Kenya Information and Communications (Amendment) Bill sponsored by Gem MP Elisha Odhiambo sought to address concerns that Safaricom has become too big through its dominant market share in voice, mobile data, and mobile money.
Currently, Safaricom controls 99.9 percent of the mobile money market.
It simply has no challenger.
Safaricom also controls over 65 percent share of the voice market.
In the Elisha Odhiambo bill, only two out of 349 legislators showed interest in debating its content.
Mr Odhiambo and his Nyando counterpart Jared Okello were the only lawmakers who contributed to the debate on the Second Reading of the Bill.
“Only two members had spoken to the Bill. Honourable Odhiambo who moved debate and Jared Okello who seconded. I can see no other interest. This means that the mover be called to reply,” Moses Cheboi, the Deputy Speaker said as he ordered that no further debate will be taken on the Bill once the matter comes up again.
It is an open fact that Kenyan MPs are so cheap, and can be bribed for less than Sh10k each.
You can join the dots on why Safaricom has never been split from MPESA.
It is a single point of failure which threatens the economy, peace and stability of the country.
No one has taken this matter serious.
A 2016 Budget Policy Statement (BPS) report by the National Treasury sounded the warning.
The authors of the report predict that an M-Pesa outage would cause loss of revenue — direct excise tax and corporate tax by firms running the systems — and reduce confidence in the services.
“If this system was to be compromised, the impact would be substantial considering the linkages and the corporate tax revenue for government,” concludes the BPS.