Mobile lenders drive microfinance entities to early grave
Friday, January 18, 2019
By Dominic Omandi
Janet Akinyi, a mama mboga (greengrocer) in one of Nairobi’s low-income suburbs, is neck-deep in debts which she incurred from the myriad mobile lending platforms that seem to mushroom with every crack of dawn.
Yet, unlike some few years ago, she is not worried. In 2010, she had a similar experience. Only then, instead of mobile loans, she was drowning in a pool of debts she secured from various microfinance institutions (MFIs).
Just as in the current mobile phone debt imbroglio, she borrowed from one MFI to repay another one. But this was not sustainable in the long-run and she defaulted.
Photo courtesy of Scott Mainwaring.