Unregulated mobile lenders have been barred from using the Credit Reference Bureau (CRB) by the Central Bank Governor Patrick Njoroge. The lenders will not be able to access the creditworthiness of a potential borrower.
The delisting follows numerous user complaints of the misuse of the services. For instance, there are a number of them that go beyond customer privacy. And contact their relatives or contacts on their behalf. There have been several customer complaints on Facebook about Okash, one of the mobile loan apps. The customers noted that once they default their loans. The mobile app will call all their contacts to follow up on the payment which is an unhealthy act.
Mobile lenders came with the norm of promising Kenyans without proper documentation to access finances equally. Especially for small to medium businesses who are large beneficiaries but the promise has since gone sour.
“The withdrawal is in response to numerous public complaints about misuse of the Credit Information System by the unregulated digital and credit-only lenders. And particularly their poor responsiveness to customer complaints. Thus, unregulated digital and credit-only lenders will no longer submit credit information on their borrowers to CRBs.” said CBK in a statement.
Regulated digital lenders in Kenya include Absa’s Timiza app, KCB M-PESA, Equity’s Eazy loan app and Mshwari. The unregulated loan apps include TALA, Okash, iPesa, Zash Loan, Opesa, Okolea, Pezesha and more.