GHANA:Telcos Chamber denies seizure of deceased MoMo users account by Telcos

The Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications has vehemently denied allegations that mobile money operators confiscate funds of deceased account owners.

According to the Chief Executive Officer of the Chamber, Ing. Ken Ashigbey, there are laid down processes to accessing such funds contained in the Payment Systems and Services (Actb 987), which regulates the activities of mobile money.

Article 33 (4) of the Act states that mobile money companies are requested to transfer monies of persons who have passed on, together with any identifiable pieces of information, to a special account held at the Bank of Ghana.

He specified that, it is the mandate of every financial institution to release funds of persons who have passed on to the appropriate beneficiaries.

Mr Ashigbey in an interview advised that relatives of dead persons report to any of the three mobile money operators and report to them with legitimate documents before they can get their money.

“What we would advise is that; once you have anyone who has died, what you have to do is to approach any of the three mobile money companies and report it to them with the right documentations; ie letters of administration or a will that says you are the executor. They will authenticate whether you are the right person, and if proven so, they will take you through the process,” he said.

Responding to claims by Ghanaians who say details of the Next of Kin do not form part of the MoMo service registration, he indicated that it is one of the Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements being implemented by the operators.

Referring to the Payment Services and Systems Act, he said that for an account to be declared dormant, it must have gone a 12-month period without registering any transaction; after which a notification will be sent to the holder and subsequently funds transferred to the BoG.

As a measure to curb the confusion, Ing. Ken Ashigbey advised that people who have lost loved ones verify from telcos for accounts they may have left behind so funds could be released.