A Zimbabwean startup, BitMari, has successfully performed a bitcoin Lightning Network test transaction with Tanjalo, a platform for bitcoin trading in Nigeria. This achievement marks a milestone for payments in Africa as users of this platform should expect lightning fast and extremely low fees on bitcoin transactions.
Cross-border Payments Easier With Lightning Network
Zimbabwe is a country that over the years have suffered from an extremely high inflation rate. Sending money outside the country is a tall order, however, BitMari the employs blockchain technology to tackle the problems faced by Zimbabweans in sending cross-border payments.
The company has also partnered with Agribank to handle transactions for their customers, and BitMari was the first bitcoin-related company to receive a money transmitting license from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.
The co-founder and CTO of Tanjalo, Tim Akinbo, initiated the transaction and was able to send $15 worth of bitcoin from Nigeria to Zimbabwe using the BitMari platform.
Akinbo thinks the new speed at which transactions can be carried out would be helpful in connecting communities across the continent and explains how the transaction process works in a video shared on the BitMari’s blog.
BitMari co-founder, Sinclair Skinner, stated:
“BitMari’s quick adoption of Lightning is active use of Bitcoin and blockchain technology to solve real-world challenges facing Africans on the continent and in the diaspora; such as costly remittance fees.”
Skinner has played a vital role in taking bitcoin and blockchain technology across the continent for widespread adoption.
Bitcoin and Blockchain Technology Can Solve Real-world Challenges
The Lightning Network essentially creates another layer on top of Bitcoin’s blockchain; this is what enables super fast and low fee transactions.
The news surfaces few weeks after the company, BitMari, successfully launched a Lightning node to support the scaling upgrade to the Bitcoin network on their platform.
Up until now, money transfers across Africa has been a challenging task. With citizens having little options but pay very high transaction fees to institutional bankers. With bitcoin in the picture, transactions are now super fast, and recipients can receive their funds wherever they reside almost immediately and most importantly, having to pay nearly nothing for such transactions.
Moreover, crypto transactions do not require any assistance from third-party firms, hence distancing people from high transaction fees of banks.
In coming days, the platform will have an increasing number of users owing to the global crypto craze. Aside remittances, the company is in a bid to making bitcoin acceptable in Africa, even for retail purchases.
Is cryptocurrency the best option instead of fiat money for Africans? Let us know your views in the comments section.