Ugandan gov’t suspends online money lenders

The State Minister for Microfinance, Mr. Haruna Kyeyune Kasolo

During a Tuesday dialogue organized by the Uganda Microfinance Regulatory Authority (UMRA) at Hotel Africana in Kampala, Mr. Haruna Kyeyune Kasolo, the State Minister for Microfinance, announced the lifting of the general ban on money lenders. However, this lift was specifically excluded for online lenders. Mr. Kasolo emphasized the need for money lenders to abide by the law in their operations.

In response to concerns over unfair policies, Mr. Kasolo had temporarily suspended the issuance of licenses to money lenders in December 2023. The Minister expressed worry about the surge of unregulated online lenders and their lack of established operating practices. He issued a warning that unlicensed money lenders in Uganda would be publicly exposed through media channels to safeguard the general public.

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As the chief guest at the event, Mr. Kasolo applauded UMRA’s Executive Director, Mrs. Edith Namugga Tusuubira, and her team for their effective regulatory and supervisory efforts, resulting in strong performance from Ugandan money lenders.

Furthermore, Mr. Kasolo pledged to engage in discussions with President Museveni regarding potential funding options to support the operations of lending companies. He proposed that the government could provide funding to money lenders, contingent on them offering a 24% interest rate to clients per year. The aim is to provide affordable capital for the people to engage in business activities.

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