Safaricom dismisses rumours of M-Pesa, KRA integration

Safaricom PLC has dismissed rumours which were circulated on social media that there was M-Pesa, and KRA integration during Tuesday's downtime.

Safaricom Chief Finance Services Officer Esther Waititu on Friday said KRA and M-Pesa are two different entities governed by the Data Protection Act hence sharing of customers by the telco was not permissible.

“Let me be clear that there was no integration, KRA themselves also publicly spoke that there was no integration happening between M-Pesa and KRA,” Waititu said.

“KRA is a separate business entity and Safaricom and M-Pesa specifically are different business entities and when you separate business entities sharing of data is not permissible and we are governed under the Data Protection Act; we cannot share data of our customers.”

Some Kenyans started claiming that the downtime was occasioned by an integration of M-Pesa and KRA.

KRA, however, flagged as fake a tweet that had been going viral on social media alleging that the state had a hand in M-Pesa downtime. 

"Kindly be advised that this is fake news," KRA said through a post on X. 

Waititu further acknowledged the inconvenience the customers went through during the one-and-a-half downtime and noted the issue had been resolved.

She assured customers that such downtime is not anticipated going forward.

On Tuesday, M-Pesa customers had to exercise patience after services remained unavailable for some time.

During that time, there were no transactions through M-Pesa, and a message popped up indicating; "The parameters of data sources are null null".

The same error was experienced while trying to transact through the M-Pesa app.

“We recognise this was inconvenient for a lot of our customers, however, the issue has been resolved, services continue to run and we can assure Kenyans and our customers specifically that everything is fine and we do not anticipate any issues going forward,” Waititu reaffirmed.