Online writers and freelancers in Kenya are at the risk of losing their sources of income, following blocked access into their Paypal accounts.
From February 22 to February 26, 2021, Kenyans have reported cases of being unable to access their funds from their Paypal accounts.
Taking their frustrations to Twitter, a number of online workers decried the blocked access, with others claiming their accounts had been closed.
The American-owned App did not give clear reasons for blocked access, with speculations that the issue was with Kenyan accounts only.
@pesa_africa says, “It’s mostly an identity issue. On PayPal as soon as I receive $3000 per day, my transaction is flagged. PayPal would never let me use their service with Kenyan ID only. In Kenya, Mpesa lets me move $3000 per day with my national ID only.”
Another Twitter user, @2ediga claims, “PayPal is grappling with fraudulent merchants more so in Kenya.”
A number of Paypal users had their accounts closed without refunds, or notice given.
Safaricom, which partners with Paypal to transfer money into Mpesa accounts and vice versa, claims that all transactions passing through them had been completed.
One user lamented that after depositing cash from Mpesa into their Paypal account, they could not transact as their account was closed.
“I just found out that my PayPal account is locked without any reason dear @Safaricom_Care @SafaricomPLC @PayPal @AskPayPal. If I knew, I wouldn’t have deposited that cash to my PayPal account yesterday.”
Some of the online jobs that require PayPal accounts in Kenya are; freelance writing, transcribing, online tutoring, research, and website development.
Young people in developing countries like Kenya benefit a lot from online work from the U.S and Europe.
Online work has employed more than 40,000 Kenyans. A majority of these Kenyans get their pay using PayPal.