Safaricom introduced Fuliza a few days ago and it is an overdraft facility for its MPESA customers. This was a surprise announcement after they published their half-year results and we have more information about the new service.
As you know, Fuliza is an overdraft facility on your MPESA wallet where you’ll be able to purchase something via MPESA even if you have insufficient funds.
Safaricom has recently updated the MySafaricom app and with it, it has added the Fuliza MPESA feature.
First, the interest rate on your overdraft is 0.5% per day on the outstanding balance. This means you’ll need to pay that balance quickly before the amount due becomes bigger than you expected.
In order for you to use this service, you need to be at least 18 years old and a registered and active MPESA subscriber for at least 6 months after registering for MPESA. These are the minimum requirements for this service.
This service is an agreement between you, Safaricom and Commercial Bank of Africa. In a press release a few days ago, Safaricom said they partnered with CBA and KCB on piloting this feature, so it is interesting that KCB has been left out.
There is an ‘overdraw limit which is the maximum amount you can be allowed to have that is dependent on your credit score. You will receive a message that will show your overdraw limit. Safaricom says that Mpesa transactions will grow your overdraw limit.
Safaricom will take into account any outstanding facilities plus fees on your MPESA account when they are processing your request.
You can cancel a request using the sim toolkit or via MySafaricom app, but that will only be allowed when the request has not yet been acted on by them. If they are able to cancel the request, you may be charged for the cancellation.
The facility term is 90 calendar days from the date the outstanding facility is granted. You can make as many requests as you can as long as it is within your overdraw limit. If you fail to pay and the facility term expires, you’ll be required to apply afresh for a renewal or extension of the facility.
When you opt into the service, you give them the powers to recover the overdraft plus fees from your M-PESA account. Safaricom will automatically deduct the amount due from funds deposited or received into your MPESA wallet until the overdraft is cleared in full. You are not allowed to terminate your phone number when you have an outstanding amount when you accept the terms and conditions.
The priority of deduction will be first in repayment of all fees, then the repayment of the overdraft facility. The fees are inclusive of all applicable taxes that include VAT. They will show a breakdown of these fees in your full statement and mini statement.
You also need to maintain your M-PESA account at an average of at least 60% of your overdraw limit over a period of 30 days.
You can register for Fuliza for more than one number provided that the terms and conditions of the service will apply to each MPESA account you have registered in your name.
If you get bankrupt or die with a Fuliza loan you will still owe the monies due, so make a mental note of that.