Botswana to discontinue use of cheques from 2024

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Cheque

Due to the rise of alternative electronic payment systems, the Bank of Botswana (BoB), the central bank, and the Bankers Association of Botswana announced Tuesday the discontinuation of cheques in Botswana effective Jan. 1, 2024.

This discontinuation includes both the issuing and the acceptance or collection of cheques, said Seamogano Mosanako, the head of communications and information services at the BoB, in a statement.

“As of Dec. 31, 2023, all banks in Botswana will cease to accept cheques for deposit and/or encashment,” said Mosanako and therefore advised the public, in addition to cash, to use alternative payments instruments such as debit or credit cards, electronic funds transfers, internet banking, mobile money transfer and other digital payments platforms and instruments.

Mosanako said the use of cheques has been less effective due to the rise of alternative digital payment systems, as it was presenting a number of challenges including a lengthy processing period of about two to four days to obtain value, prone to fraud such as forgery of account holders’ signatures, dishonored payments due to issuing of cheques without sufficient funds.

The discontinuation of cheques as a means of payment in the southern African country is in recognition of the availability of more cost-efficient, safe, secure and convenient digital payment instruments, she said.

During the period leading to and beyond the discontinuation of cheques, banks in Botswana will embark on a campaign to communicate extensively to educate their clients on alternative payment methods, especially digital channels, according to Mosanako. Enditem

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