The Chief Executive of the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement System (GhIPSS), Archie Hesse, has urged trainee teachers, nurses and students in general to cultivate the habit of using their e-zwich cards to make payments.
He said in an interview that that would be a more efficient use of the card instead of just withdrawing the funds and paying with cash.
The number of e-zwich cardholders continue to rise as the government turns to the electronic payment system for disbursement of funds for many of its social interventions. The latest additions being the trainee nurses and teachers’ allowances.
While commending the government for the bold initiative, Mr Hesse said the government’s extensive use of the e-zwich system should dovetail into the larger cashless agenda by encouraging holders of the biometric card to use it to pay for goods and services.
He, therefore, urged the Bank of Ghana and financial institutions to team up with the GhIPSS to create more avenues where e-zwich cardholders could use their cards to make payments.
Mr Hesse suggested that key stakeholders should find ways of making more Point of Sales (POS) devices available at cheaper cost to merchants so that they could deploy more locations where the students shopped.
The use of e-zwich to pay allowances, salaries and other forms of emoluments christened e-zwich Payment Distribution System (PDS), saw a 94 per cent jump in the first half of this year compared to the same period last year.
The total volume of the transactions went up from over 700,000 to over 1.3 million, according to the half year performance report of the GhIPSS.
The report also indicated that the value of transactions over the same period was up by almost 53 per cent from GH¢283.8 million to GH¢33.4 million. The significant rise shows that more people are paid through e-zwich than previously.
“With the addition of trainee nurses, teachers and the first-year university students, the volume and value of transactions will go up further and so we have to seize the opportunity to make these first-time users opt to use the cards to make payments”, Mr Hesse stressed.
He said the central Bank, together with the government intervening to make the POSes cheaper, would be timely and in line with the current cashless, paperless and technology-enabled services that the government was championing.