Zim govt suspends mobile payments

Ordinary citizens in Zimbabwe have criticised their government for banning the use of mobile money. Courtesy of #DStv403

HARARE - Ordinary citizens have criticised their government for banning the use of mobile money at a time when there is a critical shortage of cash in the country.

READ: Zimbabwe to ease coronavirus curbs, but lockdown to remain

Last week, the government suspended trade on the Zimbabwe stock exchange and stopped mobile phone-based payments to address what it calls economic sabotage.

The decision to suspend mobile payments in Zimbabwe is likely to hit the economy hard.

More than 80% of all transactions in the country are conducted via phone due to a shortage of banknotes, according to central bank data.

Some street vendors have now resorted to selling their goods in foreign currency.

READ: Zimbabwe facing economic collapse

Street vendor, Godfrey Mugombe said, "the issue of mobile money that has been banned you know people have
their US dollars at home, so we are selling in US dollars"

Economists also believe the government and central bank have made a blunder.

Expectations were high that Zimbabwe's economy would finally begin growing again following the late President Robert Mugabe's departure at the end of 2017 but that hasn't happened.