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Safaricom replies to MPESA messages with RIP prefix



Beginning on September 25, 2023, Safaricom’s M-Pesa mobile money transaction messages will include the abbreviation RIP, which stands for “rest in peace,” as the first character.

Although most users would have easily missed this RIP, a few did and criticized Safaricom for allowing such codes to start with these certain ordered alphabets. Former prime-time news anchor Linda Oguttu was one of them.

“Oya SafaricomPLC, Safaricom_Care. Mpesa codes cannot begin with RIP please….rukeni hiyo buana (skip those alphabets please),” said Ms Oguttu earlier this morning.

In response, Safaricom said, “Hello Linda, unfortunately, it is automatically generated by the system hence we are not able to change it.”

The conversation turned into banter as Linda asked Safaricom to “hand over the phone” to the system so that they could sort this matter out but Safaricom assured her that, “You are safe. No weapon formed shall prosper.”

However, those who told Safaricom they could do better said their responses were insufficient.

“The system was programmed by a technician, and it can also be reprogrammed to skip the code,” said The Peasant Farmer.

“Bwana your system has gone rogue,” added Sam NM KE.

“Ata NTSA walichorea stori ya kupeana number plates zinaanza na KDF (NTSA knew better and avoided issuing number plates that begin with KDF)…” added Joe Claver.

KDF in Kenya is popularly used to refer to the Kenya Defense Forces and civilians are not allowed to have number plates bearing these alphabets sequenced in this manner.

The National Transport and Safety Authority issued vehicle registration plates KDE and then skipped to KDG.

To understand Safaricom’s code generation, a Kenyan user, Anagram254, attempted to explain how the telecommunications company goes about it.

“All M-Pesa codes for transactions made today start with RIP. R represents 2023. All M-Pesa codes next year will start with the letter S. I represents September. All M-Pesa codes next month will have the letter J as the second digit. P represents today’s date, 25,” said Anagram254 on September 25, 2023.

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We are not taxing till numbers – KRA



We are not taxing till numbers – KRA

The public is being cautioned by the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) about a widely shared post on the internet that purports to show that the taxman is now looking into Till numbers.

KRA made it clear in an official statement on X that these allegations are wholly untrue and advised the public to be caution when it comes to possible fraud.

“Not true. Till numbers are NOT subject to taxation, and KRA does not collect any such taxes. Beware of fraudsters purporting to do any of the above.”

The revenue authority directed citizens to verify KRA staff by dialling *572# or through their official website

In September, the government proposed amending the Data Protection Act of 2019 to exclude KRA from its regulations, aiming to facilitate access to information.

The proposed change was to empower the tax agency to retrieve data from Kenyan citizens, including real-time details of financial transactions conducted through mobile money.


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Meat prices soar in Kajiado on livestock supply shortage



Kajiado County is experiencing a severe livestock shortage, which has caused a dramatic increase in the price of meat.

A few “nyama choma” restaurants have also lowered the amount of meat they roast since they claim that higher prices have made fewer people able to buy the specialty.

Nairobi, Kiambu, and Machakos counties account for the majority of Nyama Choma’s clientele, which makes it a profitable business satellite town in Kajiado.

The continuous downpour that is plaguing the area and other parts of the nation has been blamed for the shortage. Because there is an abundance of pasture available, hopeful farmers are remaining there in hopes of reaping large rewards soon.

Most people recommend selling the animals whose health declined as a result of the protracted drought is a loss and it is prudent for one to wait to benefit from the current pasture.

The most affected are goat prices, where a mature goat weighing 20 kg used to sell for Sh13,000 and Sh15,000, but now it is selling for Sh25,000.

Goat meat, which used to sell for Sh600 per kilogram, now costs Sh800 at wholesale and Sh1,200 at retail. A calf now sells for between Sh27,000 and Sh30,000, down from Sh20,000 a month earlier.

In the Ilbisil market, the biggest livestock market in the region, cattle from Tanzania, a neighboring country, currently hold a strong position. Cattle from Kiserian and Emali livestock markets, as well as Taita Taveta, currently dominate the Kitengela market.


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Ruto grants Africa citizens visa-free access to Kenya



By the end of 2023, all African people will be able to enter Kenya without a visa, according to President William Ruto, who made this announcement as part of a larger initiative to support regional integration and economic development in Africa.

He has already started putting the concept into practice by allowing reciprocal visa-free entrance to nationals of a number of other nations.

“Our children from this continent should not be locked in borders in Europe and also be locked in borders in Africa,” Ruto said while addressing a climate change conference in Congo Brazzaville last month.

The countries whose nationals are exempted from obtaining a visa are ranked as Category 1 countries by the Kenyan government.

According to Immigration Services department, Africa countries in this category are Botswana, Burundi, Ghana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Namibia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Djibouti, Eritrea, Congo-Brazzaville, Comoros, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Senegal and Angola.

Abolishment of visa requirements is expected to facilitate the realisation of the African continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).

Across the continent “It is time we realise the importance of trading among ourselves and allowing goods, services, people and ideas to move freely across the continent,” Ruto emphasised.

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