With the advent of technology, a number of things have been digitised. Key among the digitised things are the means of payment. Now days one doesn’t have to move around with a bulk of cash. Online financial services such as Mobile Money, e-banking, PayPal among others have come in to set everything up and running digitally.
PayPal is an international company that handles financial services such as making payments online, withdrawal and sending money across countries. Unfortunately, PayPal account holders in Uganda can neither receive nor withdraw money via PayPal. However, they can deposit money on PayPal via their Bank accounts or via MTN Mobile Money and Airtel Money MasterCard.
According to ICTGUY.COM, “Currently it is not possible to receive money on a standard Ugandan PayPal account but you can use it to send money online and pay for goods and services.”
The question is why?
Apparently more information confirm the fact that Ugandan PayPal accounts can neither make withdrawal nor receive money. In fact this restriction exists not only in Uganda but even in other African countries because of various reasons with the exemption of South Africa and Kenya.
These two countries also don’t withdraw directly from PayPal but rather through third parties.
Alternatives for recieving and withdrawing money on PayPal include among others; using third party verified PayPal agents who are in fact PayPal users who have accounts in countries that accept withdraws. The other alternative is to use a friend who has accounts that allow receiving and withdrawing such as Kenya. Lastly, using a VPN to open an account in a verified country.
Tech Point Magazine reports that “ To Withdraw from your PayPal account to your MTN Mobile Money or Airtel Money account in Uganda, you need to go through 3rd party providers, these pass a small charge on every transaction handled to your account.” This charge is not as small as it seems especially for those making transactions involving little amount of money.
All said and done, there is need to answer the million dollar question: Why can’t Ugandan PayPal accounts receive and withdraw money?
ICTGUY.COM posts an answer that he got after sending an email to PayPal:
“We didn’t mean to offend you in any way, this is not a form of any hate and we are not discriminating you. Rather what is happening right now is because of your country’s strict financial regulations that we need to comply with.”
Actually it’s Uganda as a Country that put the restrictions and not PayPal according to the above answer. In an era where Online transactions are increasingly being used in Uganda, it’s prudent that one of the giants in Online transactions (PayPal) is not allowed to fully function. As PayPal reassures it’s Ugandan customers that all will be fine, the wait continues.