The I&M Bank has become the first local lender to willingly scrap bank to mobile transfer fees.
According to I&M Bank General Manager for digital business Michael Mwangi, the fees have been scrapped as part of the bank’s efforts at offering new and existing customers relief from the current tough economic times. The scrapping has also been done as the bank’s effort at encouraging the use of mobile banking.
“As part of our approach to service delivery, recent customer feedback showed that as much as our transaction rates are favourable, there was an opportunity to review our policies on bank to mobile money wallet charges,” he said.
This will see the bank’s customers save between Sh. 10 and Sh. 65 per transaction that was being charged.
“We have been charging a normal rate that had been directed by CBK, between Sh. 100 and Sh. 500 it was set at Sh. 10. For higher amounts between Sh. 20, 000 and Sh. 150, 000 it was Sh. 65,” said Mwangi.
This comes after the Central Bank of Kenya reinstated the controversial fees on January 1 2023 in what was widely seen as giving in to pressure from Safaricom and Equity Bank which had aggressively lobbied for the reintroduction of the fees in 2022.
The fees had been suspended by former President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2020. Equity and Safaricom had come out publicly to call for the reintroduction of the fees. However, the Kenyatta administration had refused to reinstate the fees.
The charges were however brought back following the ascension to power of current president William Ruto’s government. In January, the High Court issued an order that the fees be suspended pending the mentioning of a case in which an aggrieved Kenyan had sued to have the reinstated fees abolished.
This order was ignored by both Central Bank and the local lenders.