MTN suspends MoMo agent for extorting money from customer

    Most mobile money agents are exposed to robbery

    MTN MobileMoney Limited has suspend a mobile money agent called KONAPET Enterprise for extorting GHC7 from a customer who cashed out GHC1,700.

    KONAPET is a MoMo agent which operates near the Pentecost Church at Odorkor Official Town in Accra.

    The facts of the case are that a customer (name withheld) went to KONAPET on July 10, 2021, to cash out GHC1,700.

    Per the MoMo rules, the customer is supposed to be charged a maximum of GHC10 for any cash out from GHC1,000 and beyond.

    But the customer reported to #SQUEAKGH that the female operator of the agent wallet insisted on charging GHC17, so instead of cashing out GHC1,700 from the customer’s wallet, she cashed out GHC1,707 but gave the customer GHC1,700 in cash.

    In effect, she kept the GHC7, while the system also automatically charged the customer GHC10 for the cash out transaction.

    According to the customer, the lady claimed she had to charge the extra GHC7 to cover “extra bank charges whenever she visits the banks to load her wallet.”

    #SQUEAKGH reported the matter to MTN and to the Mobile Money Advocacy Group of Ghana (MOMAG), with evidence of the transaction.

    Both MTN and MOMAG described the action of the agent as a crime, which is legally actionable, and promised to deal with the agent.

    On July 12, 2021 MTN reached out to the agent and their investigations confirmed the story of customer, leading to the immediate suspension of the agent’s wallet.

    Eli Hini, CEO of MTN MobileMoney Limited

    CEO of MTN MobileMoney Limited, Eli Hini told TechGh24 they are doing further investigations before they finally reach out to the customer and refund his GHC7 to him.

    He said agent might be completely blacklisted from the entire mobile money business, if further investigations reveal she has extorted money from other customers like she did to the customer in question.

    It would be recalled that in June, mobile money agents put out a statement announcing increases in cash out fees to cover an extra 10% tax on their fees as announced by the Ghana Revenue Authority. But MTN in particular, put out a statement asking customers not to agree to any extra fees apart what is automatically charged on the transaction.

    The leadership of the mobile money agents, the mobile money operators and the GRA have since been meeting to iron out how to handle the 10 per cent tax. But some agents like, KONAPET Enterprise have decided to circumvent the process and slap their own charges on customers arbitrarily in the name of bank charges.

    Eli Hini reiterated the warning that any agent caught extorting money from customers would be completely removed from the ecosystem and where necessary, be handed over to the law enforcement agencies.


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