Mobile loan app lender, Tala, has shut down operations in Tanzania without giving reasons to their customers.
The exit of Tala came as a surprise to thousands of its customers in Tanzania, the majority of which had not cleared their pending loans.
“We regret to inform you that Tala is no longer offering loans in Tanzania,” said the mobile lender through their social media handles.
For those who still have pending loans and who might have celebrated the exit have their joy short-lived because the lender will still require them to pay.
“We appreciate the opportunity to serve you, and with our loyal customers continued success in your financial journeys,” said the lender.
Tala then went ahead to give PayBill number to which those with pending loans were supposed to make their payments.
Tala is one of the largest mobile lenders in Kenya issuing loans to Kenyans from as low as 500 shillings to as much as 70,000 shillings and more.
There is an ongoing debate in Kenya as to whether mobile lenders should be regulated. Majority of the digital lenders have been accused of taking advantage of the absence of regulation to charge their customers high-interest rates.
The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) through Governor Patrick Njoroge has already dismissed mobile lenders terming them dangerous to the economy.
“It is like playing with a matchstick at the petrol station,” Governor Njoroge said at one point.
Kenya has over 500 digital lenders. As a result, more than 2.7 million Kenyans who have failed or delayed to repay their digital loans have had their names blacklisted with CRBs.
More than 500,000 Kenyans who are blacklisted on the Credit Reference Bureaus (CRBs) owe digital lenders less than 200 shillings.
After its exit in Tanzania, Kenyans are still waiting to see Tala’s next move though the company has remained mute over the move.