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Central Bank of Kenya lifts suspension on Somali money transfer companies

By Farah Adan

Dahabshil's office in eastleigh

Dahabshiil’s Eastleigh branch along 6th street opened its doors today after more than two months of inactivity following a decision by the government to suspend licenses of money transfer companies.


Up to 13 Somali owned money transfer companies whose licenses were revoked by the Kenyan government in the aftermath of the deadly Garissa University attack have a reason to smile after the central bank lifted the suspension on Monday.

The move follows President Uhuru’s directive to the bank at the onset of the Holy month of Ramadan.

Confirming the waiver, the biggest player in the money transfer market Dahabshiil said in a statement on its website that they were now back in business and services have resumed fully.

“The authorities have carried out a comprehensive review of Dahabshiil Kenya’s operations, policies and practices. They are satisfied that the company complies fully with the law, and operates strict anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing practices” read part of the statement.

Dahabshiil also announced that it will henceforth benefit from access to the Kenyan Ministry of Interior’s new Integrated Population Registration Services database, which the Ministry has introduced in order to facilitate local customers identification. The same will apply to all the other companies as the directive was industry-wide.

In an interview with Nation TV, the Chief Executive Officer of Dahabshiil Group Mr. Abdirashid Duale expressed his joy at seeing the embargo end saying they were delighted to resume services in Kenya.

“The Dahabshiil network operates in 126 countries, including Kenya, the UK and the USA, and we respect and comply with the laws of each and every country. Our services provide a vital lifeline for people to feed, educate and otherwise help their families and loved ones, and to run businesses, thus creating jobs.” He said.

He added that their badly affected clientele include many international organizations who used their services to support vital humanitarian and development programmes around the globe.

The announcement is a reprieve to thousands of customers whose lifeline depended on the remittances from abroad.



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