Senators on Tuesday urged the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) Governor Patrick Njoroge to regulate digital-lending applications. This is to prevent them from exploiting poor Kenyans with exorbitant interest rates on loans.

Kericho Senator Aaron Cheruiyot, wondered why there were no regulations yet the digital-lending apps were charging nearly "40% interest rates on innocent Kenyans.”

“That this country allows people to use digital apps unregulated, they don’t pay taxes, it looks like Kenya is a criminal enterprise…it’s a criminal haven for people who want to do digital crimes,” Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo Jnr said.

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Mr Njoroge responded by saying that CBK is in the process of developing a law to regulate the digital-lending apps. He further added that they stopped the credit apps from reporting the defaulters to the Credit Reference Bureau (CRB). This is to limit the powers of money launderers.

“Once the bill is passed we will come out with regulations, but I must say the matter is urgent and I think you are the people that see it more than us, because I am sure people have come to you seeking redress from the damage that have been caused to them,” the CBK boss told the senators.

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The Finance and Budget Committee chairman and Kirinyaga Senator Charles Kibiru has disputed Mr Njoroge's claims that a law will stop the digital-lending apps from exploiting Kenyans.

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