An industry group representing mobile money agents in Ghana called on the country’s mobile operators to provide insurance policies, amid a surge in armed robberies against its members.

In a statement made to the Ghana News Agency, the Mobile Money Agents Association of Ghana (MMAAG) – which represents 95,000 vendors – said a lack of protection for members prevented many from opening overnight even though they wanted to remain operational for the public.

The group added agents were targets for robbery and fraud, noting a recent uptick in armed attacks made the business “a risky one”.

MMAAG suggested premiums could either be divided across all of the country’s operators, or a contribution could be made by the industry with agents requiring the service pay the remainder.

The agency’s demand comes two months after reports revealed the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications was working with the country’s central bank to introduce guidelines to increase regulation in the sector and up security for agents after a spate of attacks.

At the time, the subject of insurance was said to be part of discussions to more strictly regulate the sector.