Mukuru assures USD cash to money transfer recipients in Zimbabwe

L.S.M Kabweza Avatar

Recently, Mukuru announced that due to the shortage of the Rand in Zimbabwe, it had temporarily suspended South African Rand transfers to Zimbabwe. Suspended in that recipients here can’t collect their money in Rand. Big deal for the recipient? Ofcourse not, Zimbabweans are not exactly clamouring to get Rand. It’s USD cash they want.

For the sender, again, no big deal. They can still use the Rand to remit and have Mukuru do the conversion to USD on the other end.

The USD part is what we found quite interesting. Mukuru is assuring recipients of remittances in Zimbabwe that there’ll be US Dollar cash available at a Mukuru agent near them. Not money in an account, not Bond Notes. USD cash.

Mukuru even has mobile site for recipients to check, which Mukuru agents in Zimbabwe have cash (well, it’s really a check of which agents have paid out cash in the past 24 hours, but that’s a close to accurate who-has-cash).

A quick check we did while writing this article, showed some 126 collection points that have cash, with Harare contributing 40 agents to that figure.

Techzim spoke to Mukuru SA staff last week who told us that they had managed to get some partners who are helping keep the Mukuru network liquid this side of the border. A new kind of agent called a Cash Stop has emerged from these partnerships (see picture).

Our check though revealed a few towns were no agent has cash. Or no one in that area received anything these past 24 hours? Hwange, Mpandawana, Redcliff and Mt Darwin, all had no liquid agents.

Mukuru’s other options like money being transferred straight into one’s EcoCash/Telecash wallet, or bank account, are still available for those that don’t want to be bothered with going to a physical agent.

To be clear, I don’t yet know what the cash situation is right now with other remittance companies like Mama Money, Western Union and Moneygram. Will be finding out what we can and let you know in the coming days.


  1. Anonymous

    WU always has USD cash at its Avondale branch even for substantial amounts. But it is rather expensive – be prepared to lose up to 10% of the money on a combination of exchange and money transfer commissions. The bond notes bonus will help to lower that loss by 3%.

  2. mzazaza

    Moneygram now gives Bond Notes, whichever agent you go to.

    I had used Moneygram for the past 4years from South Africa. Progressively, they have declined from giving USD to bonds.We have used the likes of Stanbic, CBZ and others and Moneygram MTAs.

    In some cases, like CBZ in almost all branches in Harare, they have been telling you they have no money, even bonds, offering to transfer to Ecocash.

    The last CBZ that gave USD was the Belmont Branch in Bulawayo. They now give Bond Notes.

    In other cases it was the CBZ tellers that were deliberately giving you Bond notes, when USD were not as scarce. On enquiry from friends who are managers, was told that it was not their policy, so my recipients were being cheated. Was recently told by the same friends that they have truly run out of USDs. So Bond notes are the order of the day.

    USDs have been mopped out of circulation, as most of us warned and predicted to “Dr” John “Stubborn” Mangudya.

    (“Dr” because his degree is from, the unaccredited, Washington International University: You know how this dumb lot believes the title, Dr, somehow lends you credibility and absolves you from stupid decisions)

    So what do we do now?

    We just talk to people we know who have USD or cash to do business on our behalf, and we buy or pay for things this side.

    Back to the good old 2008 days. Except that this is not illegal. We come to agreements with our own money from across the border, and cut out MTA middlemen and their commissions. We win! Zimbabwe and the masses lose! Businesses lose! “Dr” John “Hard Nut” Mangudya believes he wins-ish!

    We told “Dr” John “Stubborn” (Stubby) “Hard Nut” “Dullsome” Mangudya that both the Bond notes and USD would be mopped out of circulation, but as you know, his PhD is a “special” one. They teach things that you won’t find anywhere else.

    And so we sink further into the abyss. Feel for my brothers and sisters in Zim. You have suffered.

    So thank-you “Dr” John “Stubborn” (Stubby) “Hard Nut” “Dullsome” “Woma Msoro” Mangudya!

    You are reminded us why we hated Gideon Gono!