Online gambling tops mobile money usage by African youth

A great number of African youth is using mobile money for online gambling, according to a survey done by Geopoll. The survey interviewed young people aged between 18-35 who have access to a mobile phone in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ghana, Nigeria, and the Ivory Coast. 73% of those interviewed use mobile money primarily for sports betting, with wagers on European football teams being most popular. They considered mobile money a convenient way to place bets and receive winnings. Other uses for mobile money were paying for home Internet (54%), buying mobile phone airtime (53%), and paid television services (53%).

Kenya has been a leader in sports betting, however, the activity is considered a vice in the country. Online gambling has been decried by leaders in the East African community, with Kenya and Tanzania bringing in regulatory measures that have reduced the number of sports betting companies. Uganda banned sports betting in 2019.