The troubled Safaricom’s mobile money service Mpesa Africa has a new boss after Sitoyo Lopokoiyit was appointed as the new Managing Director in a attempt to salvage the degenerating terms-of-service row between the telecoms firm and thousands of Mpesa agents across the country.
Safaricom Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Peter Ndegwa who is facing stiff resistance from senior and the mid-level managers said the company will initiate the relevant talent sourcing processes to identify and appoint the next Financial Services leaders in due course.
The new leadership at the helm of the blue-chip company is undergoing serious litmus test for the first time since the reign of former predecessors; Michael Joseph and the late Bob Collymore over what employees and now infuriated Mpesa agents term as unrealistic strategic policies.
Sitoyo’s appointment is effective April 1, 2021.
“…meanwhile he will continue discharging the functions of the chief financial services office,” said Ndegwa .
Sitoyo joined Safaricom PLC on April 1, 2018, having previously served as M-Commerce Director at Vodacom Tanzania PLC Ltd from October 2015.
As the Chief Financial Services Officer, he is responsible for growing M-PESA to a fully-fledged financial platform.
He is in charge of New Business Ventures, Product Management & Development for both Consumer and Enterprise.
He is now faced with the an all important task to strike a delicate balance of the strained synergy between the establishment and their retail agents and the grassroots level.
ealers and small time agents have had their operating lines suspended or cancelled indefinitely including withholding of the investment capital commonly known as electronic float for up to six months.
Some are now considering to seek legal redress.
“Our lines have been suspended and our investment capital withheld. What makes it worse is that we are yet to be paid our monthly commissions. It is very unfortunate at a time the economy is riling from the effects of Covid-19 pandemic.” One of the operators told The Informer.
The operators are blaming Safaricom management for limiting their operating hours to send money up to 9PM.
During his time at Vodacom, he oversaw the delivery of several transformative products and services; led the turnaround strategy and execution for M-Pesa which has resulted in an accelerated growth of M-Pesa in Tanzania.
Some of the initiatives he led include; delivery of G2 platform, M-Pesa APP, interoperable transactions for both peer to peer transfers and merchant payments, Business to Business payments, M-Pesa CVM and Merchant Payments.
Prior to joining Vodacom Tanzania PLC, he was the Head M-Pesa Strategy and Business Development at Safaricom.
Sitoyo has over 10 years’ senior managerial experience from different fields; oil and gas (Chevron and Total Kenya Ltd) and in the Retail industry with Uchumi supermarkets in Kenya.