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By Daily West NileFollowing concerns over long period of turn-around raised by clients based outside Uganda’s capital, Kampala, Jumia Uganda opened a regional office in Arua City to serve West Nile sub region in Northern Uganda. Jumia is an online shopping platform where clients order for items using the mobile applications on smart-phone or programs installed on computer and payment is made through mobile money platform provided by different telecommunication companies in the country.This digital channel of transaction in the past was worrying a number of people due to days taken to send items ordered, raising suspicion over money send through mobile money. According to Arua City Manager for Jumia Uganda, Winfred Gimoro, the decision to open a regional office for West Nile is aimed at bringing service closure to clients, quickly respond to concerns raised and build confident to trade with them. “During the customer experience journey, our clients felts that Kampala was far, the turn-around time made them uncomfortable but now with this regional office, we believe that we can get feedback very quickly” the City Manager, Winfred told Journalists during launce of the office in Arua City recently. This regional office opened on the first floor of Esomart Supermarket in Arua City will also serve as the main pick-up station where clients collect their items ordered. With digital security as a main concern today, identification of persons claiming items from the collection or pick-up centre is key to prevent fraud.“I normally ask for the order number as the first identity to see if it’s the right package ordered, I then proceed to ask for a national ID of the client to verify”, says the Joyces Candiru, Hub Manager sitting in this office. Increased internet subscribersA report by Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) indicated an increase in the number of internet subscribers. The report states that nearly 20 million Ugandans now have access to internet, about 50% of the population.Arua Resident City Commissioner, Alice Akello while speaking during the launch of Jumia Uganda Regional office in Arua City advice public to embrace online platforms for transaction inline with government’s move to improve internet connectivity and accessibility. She says, “Arua now being a city needs online businesses like this on of Jumia because it saves time and now it has come to Arua, there is no need to travel up-to Kampala”.“This is one of the things that government is promoting through the Ministry of ICT, so let us embrace digital technology” she adds.  However, Secretary for Social Services in Arua City Council, Kalsum Abdu looks at the launch of Jumia Uganda’s regional office in Arua City as an opportunity of job for youths in the area. “Let us go digital, let us learn, let us join ICT programs and also tap the employment opportunities” she advised.By the time of launching this office, over 30 youths from the region were already employed by Jumia to help clients process their orders and manage the agent points to deliver items received from the head-quarter in the capital, Kampala.

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