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09 April 2018

MTN Mobile Money Driving Convenience

Before the end of this year, some companies will pay part of their staff salaries through Mobile Money. This will be done with the employee’s choice. And, one of such companies is Swazi MTN.

This is an interesting development yet to take place. It will change the complexion of how salaries are traditionally paid.

Rewind to last Friday, MTN Bushfire Festival management announced that tickets to the globally celebrated festival of the arts can now be purchased through MTN Mobile Money.

This interesting development is perfectly in line with MTN Bushfire Festival’s move to go cash-less this year. One of the program directors on Friday, Anakhonza Kunene, made a comment at the launch of the 12th edition of MTN Bushfire, saying much as there is adequate resources to run the festival, “but we have gone cash-less.”

That the MTN Bushfire has gone cashless means that revellers don’t need to line their pockets with stashes of cash. And, those who were part of the launch on Friday had first-hand experience on how the “cashlessness” of the Festival would play itself out.

On arrival, guests were given a card loaded with E70 for drinks. Each time you had to buy drinks, you would tap your card, and have the balanced depleted by the amount due for the drink.

Like Mobile Money, this convenient payment option is build off the back of convenience. Taking this turn in December last year, MTN Mobile Money introduced a pay card linked to each subscriber’s wallet. An internal pilot was rolled out in December enabling MTN staff to pay through MoMo Pay card at the company’s canteen.

It is now history that the internal MoMo pay card pilot was successful. Subsequently, it was taken out of MTN to a section of the public for further testing and polish-up. MoMo pay card will be rolled out to the broader public in the coming week. It is anticipated that MoMo pay card will simplify the lives of over half a million mobile subscribers on this cost-effective payment platform.

The introduction of this card means there is no need for extensive dancing of fingers on your mobile phone’s keypads to pay for grocery and utility bills. All you need to do is tap at point of sales machine and have the amount due deducted after punching only your PIN. And, that takes a few seconds. Some have said it is pretty much faster than a debit, or credit card. Well, that is one of many views.

From this year’s budget speed, we understand that it would now be possible to make payment transfers of up to E25, 000 on the Mobile Money platform. Now, that is convenience personified.

This means the E4, 000 daily limit will be a thing of the past. But for Swazi MTN these developments comes at a price. The company will have to step up its game on compliance and transaction monitoring. This will be done so that Mobile Money’s reputation is not soiled by money launderers and terrorism financiers.

Later in the year, employees will also have a choice to have part of their salaries paid through Mobile Money. Well, this is a first, and a welcome development in a country that has determined to calculatedly move to First World by 2022. Selected companies are already paying staff salaries through Mobile Money.

On another development, Mobile Money has been used to pay over E100, 000 in school fees to St. Theresa High school by mid-February this year. Thankfully, “most parents have embraced it as a form of convenient payment,” according to the school’s head teacher Albert Sihlongonyane. This truth is affirmed by Getrude Dladla from Timbutini, Joyce Djokopo, and several other parents who speak from experience.

Besides being a calculated shot at improving financial inclusion in Swaziland, MTN Mobile money is a practical illustration on how convenience looks like when it comes to a payment system. As long as you have money in your Mobile Money wallet, you can pay in the comfort of your home.

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