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EcoCash agents accused of selling cash

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Mobile Money In Africa, Mobile Services, Telecoms

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After we published an article on the list of banks you can link with EcoCash last week a few of our readers alerted us to the practice of EcoCash agents “selling money” purposefully depriving the public access to money they rightfully deserve.

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With 6 million subscribers, 26k agents, and 20k merchants, EcoCash has slowly become people’s primary banking option. The EcoCash mobile money ecosystem has been able to source and distribute millions of dollars in cash through its mobile appeal but is having its reputation tarnished by the illegal activities of some of its agents.

It has been alleged that agents are now in the habit of:

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  • Requesting payment in kind for service provided,
  • Requesting kickbacks when providing you with cash outs,
  • Providing cash-outs to only close associates, family, and friends,
  • Harvesting cash to then sell to the highest bidders,
  • “Spinning” cash on the illegal black market to gain maximum benefits.
Such illegal activity stems from the current cash crisis plaguing the country. The current situation has seen many unable to access hard currency for days on end which is evident from long queues witnessed at banks daily across the country. Simple Economics tells us when there is high demand and low supply, the price goes up.
On the black market, cash can be purchased at rates between 10-20%, that is, for cash, you do a bank transfer of say $1000 to the “dealers” account they can give you between $800-$900 dollars in cash. Therefore, whoever runs a cash based business can find ways to benefit from this system.
When reached for comment, Econet had the following to say:
….Our Agents are not allowed to charge customers any extra amount above the applicable approved Cash-Out tariffs automatically deducted from the phone. We encourage our customers to report such malpractices by advising us of the Agent Code on toll-free 114/111 or alerting their nearest Econet shop….
Therefore it is important that you alert Econet to any suspicious or evident cash “dealings” EcoCash agents are engaged in via their toll-free number 114/111. You could also reach them via their Econet Facebook | Econet Twitter.
If you have witnessed or been prejudiced of cash from an EcoCash agent, please share your experience below. 

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7 thoughts on “EcoCash agents accused of selling cash

  1. Finally someone writes about it. It has been happening for months and Econet stooges kept flooding the comment section with fictitious glowing recommendations. If your relative lives in SA or any of the neighbouring countries you are better of receiving the money via informal channels. Believe me, I learnt that the hard way after using World Remit and Mukuru on separate occasions.

    1. This would be the unravelling of Ecocash, if they don’t take drastic measures to address it.

      If you send money in hard cash, it must be received.

      Those caught soliciting kickbacks or some form of payment, over and above the fees they are charged, must not only get their licenses withdrawn, but must also be arrested.

      The good thing is that all transactions are traceable(theoretically), so trying to be “clever” with people’s money should easily land you I’m jail.

      I use Moneygram. No issues at all.

      As long as there is a cash crises, any dealings with such agent based transfers is very risky!

      Until such a time that agents are in fear of being dishonest through arrests and litigation..

        1. Seriously? The only people that do arrest, the police.

          It would be against the law for an agent, and by extension, a financial service provider, to add a premium above the agreed services as is licensed to them by regulation.

          This isnt Babamkuru’s tuckshop.

  2. This was bound to happen!!! One wouldn’t even need ZCE to know. And who has contributed 100% to this? Come on don’t blame Econet or Outlets.. No Industries means no money

  3. It’s been happening for sometime now….all they want for a simple civilian is you cash in but when trying to cash out all of them will be saying they’re out of cash even if you need just $20

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