Forex Bureaux, Banks not using Western Union

By Sailu Bah

It is reported that some commercial banks and foreign exchange (forex) bureaux haveCurrency Export at USD 10,000 not been transacting Western Union money transfers since Wednesday, 13 May 2015.

This development was confirmed by officials, operators and customers when this reporter visited some banks and forex bureaus that transact Western Union money transfers in Banjul, Kanifing Municipality and West Coast Region on Friday, 15 May.

Out of all the money transfer services visited only the Zenith Bank continues paying Western Union to its customers. However, an official of Trust Bank revealed that they will resume paying Western Union transfers on Monday (today).

The proprietor of one forex bureau at West Field said they are only paying RIA, Moneygram and others but not Western Union. When asked why, he said the Western Union rate vis a vis the new fixed exchange rate causes losses to the receiver (customer) and the forex bureau.

“Western Union is exchanging the Dollar at D42 while the official fixed rate is D40 which makes you lose D2 for every Dollar,” said the forex bureau operator.

Another bank official said the Central Bank should regularize the local rate to commensurate with the international one to avert businesses and customers incurring further losses.

When contacted to get his comment on the issue, the President of the Association of Licensed Forex Bureaus (AFLOB) referred this reporter to the Ministry of finance or Central Bank of The Gambia.

Foroyaa will continue its efforts to have an interview with the Governor of the Central Bank on this issue