MinBane

I write what I like.

Archive for the tag “KTN News”

Opinion: Is Collymore the only person who can run Safaricom?

That Bob Collymore has no returned to Safaricom is a sign of the state of affairs, the man whose through 2016 got the dirty laundry in the streets for everyone to see. That Safaricom and Vodaphone takes him back. Shows that the company is so big, it doesn’t care about public perception or their ordeal of the last two years. As they can get scratch free from the dirt and thinks people forget. Collymore is a shady character and runs a dirty business. However, it is profitable, that is why the leadership above him keeps him. They want the easy money and wants to run the market of telecom’s in Kenya. That is what Safaricom does so well.

That Collymore was directly involved in the General Elections, that his misuse of the company within the Results Transmissions, that doesn’t matter now. That the Safaricom used their backbone to support the Jubilee, by canceling and stopping the M-Pesa Paybill to the National Super Alliance (NASA). Shows the lack of tolerance and their political stance. They did that with passion, while fixing and making sure the fraud of an election went through with their back-channels with the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, also with Cambridge Analytica and whatever else that was needed to secure the results into the famous undisclosed server. Collymore did this and fixed that with IEBC, while stopping the cash-flow to NASA. A clear indication of his works. That was the year after the damaging internal report from KPMG.

The KPMG agreement showed how the Safaricom misused their place, their tenders and the procurement of installations of 4G, M-Pesa software and direct dealing with third-parties. This was done in a fashion where the leadership was eating of the top and putting the bills on the consumers. At a rate that was insane. That the 18th February 2016 KPMG Report should mean the end of a career for a leader and CEO like Collymore. But Vodaphone doesn’t give a rats ass. They don’t care as long as their profits are souring in Kenya. They are oblivious and nurturing their pockets, nothing else matters. Even if they are within the pockets of cartels, election-rigging and midst of public outrage. As long as the pockets are filled with shillings, they don’t mind. They can still be proud-cock and be chiefs.

That Safaricom paid of the local-media houses with ad-revenue, that they used their place to keep themselves on top. That doesn’t matter, because the results are blindly positive, even if everyone know knows that the company is run like the mafia. Controlling everything it can, not only selling Mobil-Data, Mobile-Money and Communications, but they are also a FinTech company that has the information on the public that other doesn’t. Who knows how they are using that and misusing that to gain even more profits. When Facebook does it? Why shouldn’t Safaricom too?

That Collymore should be gone, that is the reality, there should be someone who could muster trust and show that its a decent company, not a pillar of power in Kenyan Politics. Which it has become and where it muster all capabilities with the funds to slash stories in the media and also to be directly involved in Results Transmission during the General Elections. Therefore, the importance of the company is beyond communications between the citizens and their data. But also the perception of the trust between them.

Collymore is now the epitome of what is wrong with businesses in Kenya. He is the significant prospect of someone who misuses his position for monetary gain. Instead of being there for just simple services and leave the office in the night. He has directed the company in the midst of public space, making sure his stories are portrayed and cleaning the dirt of his hands. Even if it doesn’t go off, it won’t, not this way.

So Vodaphone, I have one important question:

Where the no-one else on planet earth that have the capabilities to run Safaricom?

Seemingly there should be, but your still behind the man that are really involved in shady deals for you. Taking the dirt and eating it, so that the stakeholders can eat the profits without any questionable

Advertisements

Uganda Police Force: Clarification on allegations made by Bweranaho Charles against the Flying Squad (09.05.2018)

Uganda Police Force Press Release: Riots in Yumbe District (28.03.2018)

UPF want clarify about the closure of Nalufenya (23.03.2018)

Minister Jeje Odongo’s MPS on the NCIC is revealing!

Minister of Interior Jeje Odongo own Ministerial Policy Statement of 15th March 2018 are very standard sort of document, but certain statements from there is telling. Especially on the Vote 120 on National Citizenship and Immigration Control, what it is, is apparently, reasons for why it need to be addressed, because it is a real lack transparency and not taking care of the Republic.

The NCIC is compromised of: “Deployed 300 Immigration Officers and Immigration Assistants at the borders and regional offices. This recruitment and deployment has improved border control and post entry management of aliens. This has improved representation of the ethnic groups of Ugandan and staff gender ratios” (…) “Insufficient funds to undertake constructions: Immigration offices are in very small single room measuring less than 8ftX8ft which accommodates more than 5 immigration staff. Furthermore, the Headquarters is housed in what was formerly a warehouse with some services provided under tents. Limited Staff accommodation. Some borders operate in wee hours which necessitates presence of accommodation for staff. This limits space for offices, e-services and board meetings. The Directorate requires UGX25.8bn for constructions. Porous Borders: Uganda has 52 gazetted border points along 2729 km borderline operationalized through the cluster approach. This leaves part of the borderline unmanned which compromise security and revenue generation. The Directorate requires extra UGX1.9bn for border operations” (MINISTRY OF INTERNAL AFFAIRS – MINISTERIAL POLICY STATEMENT FOR THE FINANCIAL YEAR 2017/2018, P: 62, 71, 2018).

It really is showing that something is lacking when you have 52 borders and staffed three hundred officers. That means that each border post would have about average 5 officers. Just think about that, when the border needs to be open 24/7 and there would be more on certain border-posts, also at Entebbe Airport as well. Since lots of the ones entering Uganda come by planes, not only by foot. Therefore, the NCIC is underfunded, but also understaffed.

The 300 officers are not only keeping track of the foreign workers, visitors of the Republic, but also issuing passports. Therefore, the NCIC is even more important to be staffed, because of the need of control of the borders. The republic cannot have open borders and have control of the revenue and neither also population control. It is seemingly bad planning and at random. But the porous borders and the gazetted borders should have officers. Since they are issuing in the last year over 65,000 passports last year. The Officers are really busy doing and not only looking into the ones moving across the borders.

If this body is supposed to control the migration, register and secure that no-one overstays their welcome. They need bigger funding, more officers and more training. Since that must be lacking, when the borders are seen as porous. Peace.

Uganda Police Force: Police Message – “Ref: HRM/141/225/01(.) Force Re-Organization Order” (18.03.2018)

Did Museveni call his former IGP Kayihura a “bean weevil” today? Loyalty to Mzee is clearly not worth it!

Those criminals can be arrested only that Police had been infiltrated by a “bean weevil” that was now removed, we shall now get them” – Yoweri Kaguta Museveni on the 8th March 2018 in Mityana.

President Museveni is his own kind, just days after sacking Inspector General of Police Edward Kale Kayihura and appointing someone else. He is addressing his own Police Chief as an insect who infested the bean. The bean-bag must be the Police Force, as IGP Kayihura over his 13 years in control of the Police.

To prove what a weevil is, the dictionary of Merriam Webster defines that as: “any of a superfamily (Curculionoidea) of beetles which have the head prolonged into a more or less distinct snout and which include many that are destructive especially as larvae to nuts, fruit, and grain or to living plants; especially: any of a family (Curculionidae) having a well-developed snout curved downward with the jaws at the tip and clubbed usually elbowed antennae” (Merriam Webster – ‘Weevil’ 28.02.2018). So the President are mentioning him in this fashion. To deflect the narrative that Museveni has ordered, put forward the laws Kayihura had to abide too, and also the direct orders from him. That is known, as Kayihura said his loyalty was to Museveni and his wishes. It had to be, because that is the only reason for the longevity of Kayihura as the IGP. Kayihura was able to be the IGP for 13 years. Over that time, he followed orders and made own. Which also became his fall.

However, to blame it all on him is an understatement. Kayihura did a lot wrong and followed his guts in the is political will and his achievements of monitoring politicians and using the police in oppression of the opposition. This has been done with the blessings of the State House. If it wasn’t for the will of Museveni, Kayihura wouldn’t have acted. Some things he did on his own, like the ICT Corruption Scandal within the UPF. The mission of using Crime Preventers, but that was also blessed by the almighty himself. It was okay to use Boda Boda 2010, when it was to intimidate the opposition and intimidate them. Now that it became a problem and their crimes became an issue, the squabble with Gen. Tukumunde, was the final nail in the coffin. Museveni couldn’t have it this way.

Clearly, the little bug, the little insect that he hired again and again. He had 4 terms of 3 years. That is twelve years, before given his 5th last year. So it wasn’t like Museveni didn’t trust him and used his services as a punching bag and as the IGP. In November 2016, Kayihura was awarded by the State as the “Exemplary Uganda’s Civil Servant”. A little over a year later, he is sacked because he isn’t that good, but he was good enough in Mbale in November 2016.

Now, after the bustle between Kayihura and Tumukunde, while the insecurity has been rising, while murders being unsolved and the crime not taken care of by the Police. They squabble between them destroyed the credibility of both of them even more as the Muslim Clerical murders, Entebbe Woman murders and the list goes on. Even the high profile assassination of Andrew Kaweesi hasn’t been solved. There are to many plots and acts who hasn’t been looked into or afraid to do, because it might reveal who is on the top of the food-chain and who ordered the killings.

So with that in mind, calling min a weevil or an insect days after his sacking is beneath any president, but it is in fashion when it comes to Museveni. He has called people similar in the past, but this is what he says about someone who has been loyal to him, like forever. Kayihura had been his cadre, his comrade in crime, the one who did his dirty work and followed orders. Kayihura just worked in the interest of Museveni. Now days after Museveni shows how much he values his work.

If it had been opposition, they would have the right to name him in bad fashion, since he has crashed them, detained them, house-arrested them and tried to destroy their lives. Because they were opposition and against his master Museveni.

The President shows his own personal agenda, it is always washing his hands of his dirt. Always making sure that he himself get left unscratched by the actions and orders he delivered. That is why this demeaning to Kayihura and his work. Kayihura was acting vile and was a monster, he was someone who acted as a IGP in command under Museveni. He would not act like that if the President didn’t order him too. Some he would do on his own, but the rest is orders from the President and his will.

So if IGP is an insect, he was the President own personal insect. So now he used pesticides and got rid of it. That is what the President said today. He took him away with Raid sprayed the crap out of the Police and now gotten rid of the weevil. Now that the insect is gone, the Police will catch the criminals. However, I doubt that, because the system and rules, the orders came all from Museveni.

Kayihura was the man Museveni made, even if he don’t like the results now, it was his making. Museveni made the organization, accepted the short-comings of him and his use of Police Force. Police Force became like it is, because Museveni made it possible. I don’t say that to defend Kayihura, because I don’t want to defend the man. He deserves to be in bracelets himself for breaches of the Constitution and misuse of power. However, that will not happen.

Mr. President when you are saying things like this, your proving that loyalty to you and following your words is worthless, because you will destroy them the moment you can in your own favor. Peace.

President Museveni sacks Minister Tumukunde and IGP Kayihura: However, will it make a difference?

Today, two loyalists of the President has gotten fired, this was sudden and was not anticipated. Today on the 4th March 2018, the Inspector General of the Police Edward Kale Kayihura and the Director General of Internal Security Organization (ISO) General Henry Tumukunde. Both have been dropped suddenly after the recent leaks of lacking policing and rising crime in Uganda. There been reported of only 5% rate of murders being solved in the recent year.

A statement signed by the President and dated 4th March, 2018, reads as follows: In the Exercise of the powers vested in the President by Articles 113 (1) and 213 (2) of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, I hereby appoint General Elly Tumwiine as Minister for Security, Mr. Okoth Ochola as the Inspector-General of Police and Brigadier Sabiiti Muzeei as the Deputy Inspector General of Police”.

So the President has actually acted on the worse state of the Police and the public perception, as the police has been more focused on opposition politicians, than actually fighting crime. I don’t think the Police Force will stop doing that and also ban Besigye from dinners and public gatherings. However, this is proof that the President acts. Even if he is late to the party, since he should known that the Police have had gangs working for them and intimidated them. It isn’t like the President did this while the Muslim Cleric died or the woman at Entebbe died last year. Not that the Police leadership changed when the AIGP Andrew Kaweesi was killed. Therefore, the Boda Boda 2010 and the Crime Preventers issues must have really hurt some pride. Since, the change happens now. As the ISO is investigating Police Force and the Police Force was starting to investigate agents who did kidnap civilians and also did dirty work. Clearly, the President maybe wanted to stop that sort of acts. Since both actions make it look stupid and also looks like to different criminal groups, which is sanctioned from the state.

So now the NRM goes back to the NRA days, as they are hiring Tumwiine, as the Daily Monitor reports: “The new security minister Gen Elly Tumwine served as Commander of the National Resistance Army from 1984 to 1987. Gen Tumwine who also sits on the UPDF High Command fired the first shot in the National Resistance war. He replaces Gen Henry Tumukunde” (Daily Monitor, 04.03.2018).

So Tumukunde loses ISO and Ministry of Security, the battle between Kayihura made them both lose. Even as Kayihura wasn’t long ago promised a new tenure and term. Therefore, his contract got taken back and now he lost his job on a Sunday. It was on 2nd May 2017 that Kayihura for a new three year term. Now the Deputy IGP John Martins Okoth Ochola takes over becomes the IGP. J.M. Okoth Ochola is what you call a traditional Police Officer, if he will implement that, instead of the military attitude of Kayihura is to be seen. As he has worked for years under Kayihura.

All of this might change the faces of the Police Force and the Ministry of Security, however, it is the same President and the same party behind it. If the Parliament, the President and the Security Organization wants change, the procedures and institutional polices has to change. The accountability and the organization has to change. The Police Force isn’t make the nation safe, neither was ISO or the UPDF. The Special Forces Command or any other organization created to secure the public. That is why people is murdered and there are no signs of proper investigations, even criminals who just get away with their crimes.

This change might happen because of the United States new Travel Advisory on the 10th January 2018 said: “Exercise increased caution in Uganda due to crime. Violent crime, such as armed robbery, home invasion, and sexual assault, is common, especially in larger cities including Kampala and Entebbe. Local police lack the resources to respond effectively to serious crime” (Travel.State.Gov, 10.01.2018).

So they are have started to worry about the state of the police in Uganda. When they are warning their tourists. It says a lot about how they know about the current state of policing in Uganda. This must have gotten into the ears of Museveni and that is why he fires both of them. As the squabble between Kayihura and Tumukunde, has been fought in public. As the ISO has gone after proxy organizations of the Police Force. They have taken people connected with Kayihura and now he didn’t just lose, but Tumukunde got sacked too. When you play high, the rewards might be high, but fall might be worse.

People despise Kayihura for his actions and his defense of the NRM, the political driven police force, who has bankrupt the Force and also extended the mandate because of the Public Order Management Act of 2010. The POMA clearly made the Police Force focused on policing and monitoring opposition, more than collecting evidence and actually solving crimes. The Police Work has been left behind, they have used fear and used gangs to stop people. It has been strange, but it was sanctioned and accepted until now.

President Museveni suddenly acted swiftly, as he wanted to save face, even if the barren organization, the bankrupt system is still there. The scandals and the lack of morals are there. The ISO and UPF are still two security organizations without trust in the public, because they are more into politics, than fighting crimes. They are no bipartisan, but a visible hand of the NRM.

The insecurity and the lack of policing is something that has occurred over time. It wasn’t created in a vacuum of Kayihura or Tumukunde. This was done by President and with his orders. Kayihura has said his been a loyal man who just follows orders. He will continue to say that to clean his hands of dirt, as he has done his vicious and malicious acts against the citizens. Kayihura knows this and he knows he has made political prisoners and done so as ordered from the State House. That is where the big problem is, it is the State House. The organizations, the institutions and the insecurity has been made from there.

It is the lack of transparency, oversight and accountability of the Security Organizations, it is the lack of resources and the maladministration. It is the whole structure and the orders from the President, who promise and pledge, but doesn’t invest. Museveni has created this, but it is easier to sack someone, than actually destroy something and rebuild. Right now the Police Force isn’t professional, neither is ISO. The lack of protocol, procedure and training, is the reason for this mess. The lack of actual officers who do their duty and has no reason to even do so.

We should also worry about Gen. Tumwine, the former NRA and rebel whose been loyal to Museveni, don’t expect ISO and Ministry of Security to be nice and smooth. The malicious acts of the Ministry will continue, as the vicious crackdown of 2001 was in the hands of the general. Who while in charge made sure dissidents entered Kigo Prison, which was leaked in 2005 and 2006. Therefore, the world knows that he tortured lawyer, human rights activists and also opposition activists there. Therefore, Tumwine, might do similar things now that he has power in service of Museveni. So he goes from the UPDF General Court Martial, where he has stated in the powers. That previous trials and charges on Besigye was ordered and not made on legal basis. Therefore, he is brave enough to speak up against Museveni. But if he will do more than speaking is likely, since Museveni has made him general and made him Minister again.

We just have to see how this goes. Surprised today, yes and not so worried about the battle between Okoth Ochola and Tumwine. But if they will rock-the-boat, I doubt it and if they will reform their institutions and their organizations. I doubt that too. They will be figureheads who are loyal to Museveni and await orders from the State House. We will just see if their leadership roles, can stop the insecurity and the problematic state the Police has no in society.

The top chef, the one who has created this dish is in the State House. It is the President who is in-charge and let all of this happen. It is Museveni who didn’t act and made it possible for the Police to investigate and make sure the Police could solve the crimes done, the murders and all other activity. Clearly, that hasn’t been possible.

Time will tell if that will happen now! Peace.

A Monster Museveni Created: The Failing Kayihura Police Force!

Gen. David Sejusa wrote this in a letter on the 7th July of 2014:

I wonder if Mr Museveni really knows what is going on in his own security institutions, or has he been rendered powerless by the very monster he created, i.e., personalised rule? It is because the officers who give him intelligence are the same arch criminals who need to cover their tracks. With no functioning systems, you wonder what information the head of state depends on to rule the country. Otherwise, how can he not see the danger he is putting the country into and himself? Not that it matters much though, because either way, he, Museveni, is personally responsible” (Gen. David Sejusa letter- ‘LOOMING WAR AND GOVERNMENT COVER UP: Government agents target civilians to scare population’ 07.07.2014).

Inspector General of Police (IGP) Edward Kale Kayihura, again you get on my radar, you are offering bounty for killers of innocent woman, who was dropped on the street like garbage. That is happening after dozens of strange foreign deaths are appearing all over the Republic. There so much weirdness going on, just like the Boda Boda 2010 relations and the Crime Preventers Program. All of this doesn’t add-up.

The sour relationship with Gen. Henry Tumukunde, the Chief of Military Intelligence (CMI) and the problems the police has with the Internal Security Organization (ISO). It’s like the Security Organizations are working not together to sting the criminals, but are trying to incriminate each other. As Muslim Clerical leaders died mysteriously last year, like group of woman in Entebbe too. There been so many strange unsolved crimes that the death of Assistant IGP Andrew Kaweesi seems like detour. Instead of the biggest hit-piece in the recent decade.

Within all of this as the Boda Boda 2010 leaders of Abdallah Kiatta and Paddy Sserunjogi aka Sobi. We can question how the police sanctioned this gang and let it off. And why suddenly it had to fall. Since the Police needed someone to go down and the Tumukunde had to pick someone to teach Kayihura a lesson or two. The striking revelations is how short distance it is from becoming a officer to act a criminal. That is what is worrying and also the signal, the only difference between the police officer and the criminal, is that the officer has the blessing of the state and a badge, the criminal has none. There is supposed to rules to the game, but clearly it is not.

On top of that and ICT scandals, the ICT frauds, that has escalated and became a big-deal, even the ICT Manager Amos Ngabirano fled from the country recently, because of how he was involved and that he feared for his own life. In all of this, the State House, the External Security Organization and the Police are also fighting for how to monitor the mobile money market. This is after who they should assigned the program and who can monitor it, if the its the Uganda Communication Commission, the Police or even the State House. So all of them can use the software to monitor the spending of Ugandans. This is happening, while people are busy seeing the external fights between Tumukunde and Kayihura.

They have even pushed further a New Vision reporter was abducted and gone from the paper for days, this Charles Etukuri, who has had close relationship with Kayihura and nicknamed his “Social Media Manager”. Therefore, this was another assault on the pride of Kayihura, who had seen many of his men taken and his lieutenants.

We can question what is going on, as the crimes are not solved, the bounty on Susan Magara killers proves the lack of mentality to solve the crimes and the lack of honest work within the Police. That is not strange, as the state of affairs isn’t getting better. All of this has happen quickly, as Kayihura has to even beg the Parliament for additional funds, since only 5 % of his operation are getting salaries. They are lacking funds to pay salaries as the police squad has increased and also the equipment of the police has become better. That is not strange as before the General Election of 2016, they got everything from new mambas, tear-gas and more manpower.

To top it all off, the Minister Jeje Odongo, Internal Affairs Minister has told Kayihura to polish the image of the Police. Kinda hard to do that on a little candy and not even paid-in-full. While the structures are even smashed by other security organizations. This is happening while the monitoring of the political parties and the enemies of the state. Not following the criminals and such. They have spent fortunes to follow and monitor the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC). Even more on house-arresting Kizza Besigye over the last two years, even the financial costs of tear-gassing, live-bullets and the misuse of power against political opponents of the President. That has all to cost a fortune, the extra hours and the equipment. Even the famous van and mobile terrorizing place, can be seen as project made out of nothing.

The sudden loss of funds, the lack of budget to an organization blown up to be political and block politicians cost. When they are not serving the people, but the will of man. Who want to beat everyone into submission. Especially the ones he cannot bribe into it.

We you combine all of this factors, I have not even addressed the saga of Crime Preventers, who has been used by the Police and the State during the elections, paid for uniforms and weapons. This together with all the other factors, the training and the constant move of leaders. The strategic forces and questionable work of the police. The sudden Fika Salama campaigns are cool, but the issues are deeper, than just on the surface, that cars are overloaded.

The police force is up-to something and certain things kept quiet about. Even the stories of Gen. Sejusa might have some power in them. As his warnings year back is now coming into light. The darkness and lack of institutions, the lack of oversight and use of gangs to keep things at bay. Are now shown, as much as the police is acting as criminals. Just as the sudden militias that came and went, where police-shootings was appearing in Kapchorwa Police Station attacks with SUN, Gulu Central Police Station with National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and the insurgency of Kirumiramutima in Kasese. All of this had violence and killings involved, but they silently stopped without any resurgent attacks by anyone of them. The government sanctioned violence was the one visible against the Rwenzururu Kingdom, as it was also on these two Police Stations.

We can clearly, see that the vision of Gen. Sejusa has power, as he saw this all coming. It is now visible, the lack of clear leadership, the reckless behavior of IGP Kayihura and Security organizations. That his involved other questionable activity and use of organizations that was beneath and beyond the services supposed to be delivered by the Force. Also the lack of investigations and the lack of actually policing. More of just brash PR stunts and picturesque shows of public display, instead of actually catching the murderous, the ones picked up is quickly released.

All of this madness is connected, the lack of funds, the growing organization, the battle of supremacy between Tumukunde and Kayihura. All of this isn’t a game, but real life at stake, they are all doing all of this because the President wants it like this. They want to use the Security Organizations to make insecurity to fake their own agenda.

This would been a pulp-fiction novel, a quick-fix book you buy at a flea-market. Instead, this is happening right in front of our lives. They are misusing the state funds and violating our intelligence, while they are proud of their craft.

There is to many things missing, the plots and the ideas, the scenarios where this is making the regime winning, other than spreading fear and silence people. If that is the only goal, they are using high-power weapons and expensive monitoring of politicians. While they are using the police to create crime and not actually fight crime. Which is weird in itself. It is visible and vicious!

Kayihura, should wonder and be boggled, he has lack of funds and giant mission, he needs manpower to fulfill the Public Order Management Act and the others things he want to do to serve the President. He is the presidents loyal servant. That he knows, but the actions and the now internal squabble between him and Tumukunde. We can wonder who else will join in and if the Mobile Money, will make the UCC and other go against him too. Who knows at this point, but the words of Sejusa should be with all of us.

The words we should remember today, as the police are in tatters and the public played for fools, we should remember: “I wonder if Mr Museveni really knows what is going on in his own security institutions, or has he been rendered powerless by the very monster he created, i.e., personalised rule?” (Sejusa, 2014).

We should ask if he is powerless because of the monster he created and he made during his rule. If he is able to understand and get into his mind, what sort of violence and policing his has sanctioned. Kayihura and his business has been accepted by the State House for years. The ISO, ESO and CMI, are all organizations that Museveni has created. Not only the UPDF and Special Force Command, who are other groups he has given powers too and training too. They can now fight each other and use methods of state organized violence against innocent citizens and possible troublemakers. However, most likely they will create trouble themselves. These are the monsters Sejusa described, the reckless organizations that will make him powerless. That is why he tries to pull the strings on the Police Force, but is it too late?

Peace.

FinTech Companies in Kenya: Are now evading the personal space of costumers to provide them services!

Today, I will write about how international businesses are using their power and their markets strategy, while people are giving up their private communications and other vital information for simple transactions between family and friends, also when borrowing micro-credit or buying solar-cells through credit. This is all based on the Privacy International recently released report and the quotes are taken from there. It shows vital information taken from citizens who uses apps and financial services in their daily lives. Clearly, they have accessed certain freedoms for the trade with these Kenyans. The business transactions and the trade is not only making direct profits for the corporations allowing direct transactions, but also delivering services like payday loans and buying equipment. Still, it has a special price and they have to sign-up to give away certain aspects of their lives to gain this. That is what is interesting because it says something of how much of the personal space these corporations are getting from the persons they are profiting from!

The term ‘fintech’ has been defined by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) as: “a dynamic segment at the intersection of the financial services and technology sectors where technology-focused start-ups and new market entrants innovate the products and services currently provided by the traditional financial services industry.” (Privacy International, P: 10, 2017).

Yet a change that has not been much explored is that M-Pesa also produces a vast amount of data for the telco Safaricom. Each of the millions of transactions that take place a year tell a story. They tell the story of how the small business is operating: the money they’re sending to their suppliers, the transactions that are taking place. But it tells other stories as well: the money that comes in and then is sent to the hospital. The school fees paid by the biological father, unknown to anyone except the mother, father and Safaricom. But there is also a way in which this data is known by third parties. The transmission of the content of the money transfers over M-Pesa is encrypted. However, the details of any transactions are sent, unencrypted, by plain SMS. Even if M-Pesa transactions themselves are sent via secure and encrypted means, the account information is not. The messages that someone sends for receiving or sending money include the name of the recipient (from the registration of the SIM), the amount sent, and their current balance. This facilitates the gathering of personal data by apps. The fact that the transactions can be tracked becomes a large part of the power of the lenders, as in the Kenyan example, leaves a trail via the M-Pesa SMS messages for both customer and retailer. As shall be illustrated, this is an aspect of M-Pesa of which fintechs are able to take advantage” (Privacy International, P: 29, 2017).

Tala App:

From the data provided by the app, decisions are made about whether and how people repay their loans. One of the key pieces of data is to analyse the content of SMS messages for the records of M-Pesa payments. These are very valuable records to analyse; for example, if the person seeking a loan has a small business, it is a good measure of the health of the business and the money entering and leaving the business. But, according to Tala, it can also be used to analyse how people are actually using their loans, as frequently the money they receive from Tala will leave someone’s M-Pesa account immediately (for example, to pay school fees or a hospital loan, or an individual). But the analysis of the data by Tala extends beyond this, to make analyses based on data and information that are, at best, unexpected to be used for credit scoring. For example, Tala analyses call logs: their analysis has found that people who make regular calls to family are 4% more likely to repay their loan. To do this analysis, they need to know who your family is: from the content of text messages that call someone “mama”, and the pattern of calls” (Privacy International, P: 30, 2017).

Branch:

One difference from Tala is that Branch also makes use of Facebook for authentication; as discussed below, this is allowed under Facebook’s terms and conditions. Another factor that Branch uses for its decision-making is the behaviour of your friends, and their repayment patterns for Branch loans. How does Branch know who your friends are? They have a refer-a-friend feature (as does Tala), which is one source of this data. But they can also see your Facebook friends, and your call log to know who is contacted regularly” (Privacy International, P: 31, 2017).

M-Kopa:

The data that M-Kopa gathers from the device via the SIM is information like location (using cell data, not GPS), the charge level in the battery, and what devices are plugged in. They will also soon be gathering data on the television programmes watched. This specific data on programming is not data that it is planning on selling, but rather to use to develop its own services in the future. M-Kopa’s website states that, “After completing payments, customers own the product outright.” However, the customer does not own their data. The terms and conditions of a M-Kopa loan make the company’s position on data clear: “M-KOPA shall have absolute and sole ownership of … the data which is obtained by the Customer’s use of the Device.” Customers have no right to even see their own

data, apart from the provisions under Credit Reference Bureau rules. For M-Kopa, it ultimately comes down to a business decision: “If data privacy was important for the Kenyan consumer, we would do it,” states Chad Larson, the Chief Credit Officer at M-Kopa. At the same time, both M-Kopa and its investors have a viewpoint that their use of data is ethical” (Privacy International, P: 32, 2017).

Control over the data:

A significant issue with the fintech companies in Kenya, is that they keep access to the data. They keep the data—and, in some cases analyse it, even if the user has stopped being a customer of theirs, and has deleted their app. Branch is explicit that it keeps the data even after a user uninstalls the app, and admits it is possibly doing further analysis on it, “we have that right.” Tala encourages people, even if they have been rejected for a loan, to keep the app; if they do delete it, Tala retains their data. This is so that, if the customer returns later, they can reinstall the app, go through some simple KYC checks, and be able to borrow again. M-Kopa, on the other hand, continues to collect data from the device even after the loan has been repaid” (Privacy International, P: 33, 2017).

Just as this reveals that Safaricom, the partly owned Vodacom Telecom Business have no trouble through the M-Pesa, the Cellphone Mobile-Money Transactions, that they can hold onto all information between all parts of the transactions. Like how a person send the messages of giving money to friend/family and at what point they picking up the mobile-money. This personal data is all incorporated into their apps, as they provide the services and keeps this fintech data on each of their clients.

As we see with the Tala App, which is also used to get loans. Tala analyses the personal SMS’s from the client to either give or not accept proposals for loans from their services. Tala are looking into the M-Pesa messages given to the client and are scanned by the app. To see if the client can actually be able to repay the debt possible sign-off from Tala. This proves that the Tala App is checking the credit history done with the services of M-Pesa, which is Safaricom/Vodacom. Branch another Fintech app is taking it further, they are also analyzing your behavior and who is your refer-friend on Facebook. They are clearly entitled to the private information of your networks before you get a loan. So they know exactly, who and when you contact friends and family on social media before giving you a loan. It shows how personal and how much information on app can get before you get the services needed from them.

M-Kopa are another one, who is directly saying that all information collected from their costumers are their to own and to use for later costumers. It can also be used after the usage. More of these Apps seems to do so. They are keeping this personal data even after the transactions, the loans and the purchase. This can be used to further get clients and knowledge of when the costumers need it more. So they can get them “addicted” to the services. We have no idea how they store this personal data or who they trade it with after gathering it all.

This should all be scrutinized and questioned, as it breaches with personal space collected with marketing and simple ploy to generate enough information to be able to gain the services from the companies. These companies are vultures of the costumers private space and uses it as leverage for their trade.

It is worrying how far they are taking it and how much personal information they are gathering to give them these services. Peace.

Reference:

Privacy International – ‘Fintech: Privacy and Identity in the New Data-intensive Financial Sector’ (November 2017)

Post Navigation

%d bloggers like this: