There has always been a need for digital payments in a country that aims to run a cashless economy in the foreseeable future. While the projected period wasn’t expected anytime within the current decade, the advent of Covid-19 and its devastating impact has made the need for digital payments to take prominence in our daily transactions a matter of great importance.
This month, August has been set aside by MobileMoney Limited for this year’s edition of MTN Ghana’s MoMo Month. The month-long event would be used to educate the public on what the Mobile Money platform is set to impact the local economy and financial sector with.
The need for digital payments in a Covid-19 impacted world
Way before there was ever a global health pandemic that highlighted the importance of digital payment platforms taking centre stage in completing all transactions that needed an exchange, MTN Ghana foresaw a pandemic of a different sort. There were too many individuals in the unbanked population of Ghana; highlighting the need for an effective system that would bring them into a formal setting. That need marked the birth of MTN Mobile Money, or MTN MoMo as it is now popularly referred to.
The Covid-19 pandemic came in ravaging lives and livelihoods all over the world. One of the earliest vectors of the virus we were cautioned about was physical currency; banknotes and coins. Of course, it made sense; money exchanges hands between different people in one day; any of whom could be a carrier of the virus.
The exciting thing was that the Western countries hardest hit by the pandemic generally have a healthy reverence for handling currency; neatly folding them into wallets and purses; with no dirty looks or funny smells. So for them to be issuing such directives meant that no chances were being taken.
Now that it has become more apparent that Covid-19 is not a pandemic we can necessarily deal with by going into hiding, a lot of people are becoming lax on observing preventive measures. Thus among many things, people are beginning to revert to the use of cash in making payments for goods and services purchased – knowing the implications.
The need for digital payments goes beyond Covid-19, however; although for us in this side of the world, it is still hinged on sanitation and personal hygiene. It is common knowledge that some people keep banknotes in their brassieres and undergarments; their version of safekeeping.
Now, why would you be comfortable touching money that’s been inside someone’s possibly unwashed brassiere or panty? And if you happen to be in the habit of putting money in your mouth when counting it then, imagine the number of germs you’d be eating as well as passing on to the next person who handles that banknote or coin.
Using MTN MoMo for your transactions goes beyond a simple need for digital payments. Because as you’ve read and can imagine, banknotes and other forms of physical currency are perfect for transmitting diseases because here in our part of the world, our general attitude towards cash is not something to be proud of.
We all know it to be accurate; we’ve all observed other people mishandling money in that sense. And the chances are that, until we knew better, we weren’t acting any different than those people do.
As we mark MoMo Month with MTN Ghana, it is essential to remember why we stress on the need for digital payments. Tthey are safer when we consider hygiene and sanitation; and of course, your money is much more secure in your MTN Mobile Money wallet.
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