Matatus stop M-pesa payments due to reversals

A Matatu operating in Mombasa./COURTESY

A number of matatus have stopped receiving passenger fares through M-pesa.

According to the matatu conductors, some passengers have been reversing the M-pesa transaction once they alight the matatus.

“When we started the M-pesa payments things were okay, but now someone pays through m-pesa, shows you the transaction message and immediately they alight the matatu, they dial *456# to reverse the transaction. we have been losing a lot of money because of these reversals,” said no.4 matatu conductor plying the Eastleigh route in Nairobi.

With such mischievous behavior from the passengers, some matatu operators plying the route have decided to ban M-pesa payments.

“I hope nobody is paying via M-pesa, we are not accepting M-pesa payments. If you do not have cash, go to the M-pesa agents and withdraw some,” Mogaka, a conductor, tells passengers boarding the matatu.

The mobile money payment system in matatu was one of the suggestions made by the Ministry of Health during the first outbreak of COVID-19 in the country in March 2020.

The method was supposed to mitigate the spread of the disease by reducing the handling of cash.