Kenyans will have to adapt to the new order as the High Court allows banks to resume bank to mobile money transfer charges.
On January 12, the High Court issued temporary orders to stop the reintroduction of money transfer charges, pending the petition that was filed.
The petitioner, Moses Wafula , argued that the introduction of the charges is a violation of his rights and that of members of the public.
“The Applicant contents that his rights and the rights of other members of the public have been violated, infringed and continue to be threatened by the 1st responded herein and the government of Kenya in view of the directive issued by the intended 3rd Respondent on 6th December 2022,”read court documents.
The petition was filed last year after a notice was issued to the C.B.K announcing the introduction of the charges effective January 1, 2023.
The Court Order
Justice Mugure Thande said she would not extend the orders as there was a ruling pending on the same issue before another judge.
The case filed by Moses Wafula, she stated that, it would be improper for her to come in between while the case was awaiting determination before justice Anthony Mrima.
She also said that some of the parties involved are yet to be enjoined in the case.
“The court declines to extend the orders in view of the fact that parties are yet to be enjoined in the proceedings,” said justice Mugure.
The petitioner’s lawyer, Irene Nafuna told the court that it would be impossible to recover money collected from mobile money subscribers if the court does not intervene.
“If the banks continue riding on this Mpesa Pay bill infrastructure, making money from the members of the public , and in the event that this court finds this M-pesa paybill platform to be in the contravention of the constitution and various statutory provisions , the impact will be higher, more funds from the members of the public would have been lost and it maybe lot more difficult to task the banks to refund such funds collected from the members of the public,” argues Irene.
In the case, Wafula sued Safaricom, the C.B.K , the Attorney General , the Communication Authority of Kenya and the Competition Authority.
He argues that its unfair for Safaricom to charge customers while it acts as a mediator for banks.
According to him, the charges should be between Safaricom and banks and not the latter and the banks customers.
On December 6,2022, CBK said the charges were set to be restored from January 1,2023, following discussions with the banks and payment providers.