Council re-engages debt collectors as revenues plunge

HARARE City Council has re-engaged a debt collection company it had cut ties with, following the plummeting of revenues in the past few months, amid indications that residents were reluctant to pay.

BY XOLISANI NCUBE

In an advertisement published yesterday, council announced the re-engagement of Wellcash Debt Collectors from Thursday, with the mayor, Bernard Manyenyeni, recently acknowledging that all was not well in terms of revenue collection.

“The City of Harare would like to advise residents and ratepayers that it has re-engaged Wellcash Debt Collectors with effect from August 10, 2017.

“Ratepayers are encouraged to comply with the payment plans they entered with Wellcash,” the statement read.

Council had terminated the relationship after some residents’ groups, such as Harare Residents’ Trust and Combined Harare Residents’ Association, complained over the debt collectors.

Minutes of a council meeting for March and April suggest that council had increased its revenue collection by at least $5 million due to debt collectors, but after the termination of the deal, revenue collection dropped significantly.

When the debt collectors were operating, residents would enter into payment plans in fear of being dragged to the courts or losing their property, but afterwards, the arrangements collapsed.

“Those who may not be able to fulfil their obligations are requested to visit Wellcash offices at their head office or respective districts to renew or renegotiate payments plans. Ratepayers are encouraged to make payment plans with the City of Harare to avoid debt collectors,” the statement read. “A payment plan that is adhered to does not attract interest charges.”

On average, council was collecting $13m and Manyenyeni had to appeal, saying “all those who supported the disengagement of debt collectors should be the loudest in revenue collection calls”.

11 Responses to Council re-engages debt collectors as revenues plunge

  1. gibson August 12, 2017 at 8:43 am #

    Pakaipa. Hatisi kuramba kubhadhara asi kungoti mari yacho hapana and hapana. They are not going to succeed. Vanhu ngavapihwe mabasa.

  2. NACIDO RICO August 12, 2017 at 2:00 pm #

    Council should distribute water to areas like, Borrowdale, Greystone park, Glenlorne, Greendale, Mandara, Msasa park, Highlands. People in these low density areas always pay if they get service. Most residents in these areas buy water from private suppliers every wk. These private suppliers, am beginning to think, are council bosses who deliberately cut water to enable their businesses to flourish. COUNCIL BOSSES SHOULD STOP RUNNIOG H20 DELIVERY BUSINESSES IN AREAS THAT I HAVE MENTIONED.

  3. NACIDO RICO August 12, 2017 at 2:33 pm #

    Residents in high density areas mostly landlords do not pay a cent inspite of the fact that they always get water. They have lodgers who pays rentals every month but nothing goes to the council. Council should remove water mtrs and plug the water pipes until all the arrears are paid.
    Most of these residents are waiting for the nonagenarian to instruct all councils to write off the debts come 2018.

  4. Morgan August 12, 2017 at 4:27 pm #

    How are the councils supposed to run if no one pays.If politicians demand writing off debts owed they must promise that the government will reimburse the council of all the debts forgiven.There is no such thing as free lunch someone always has to pay.

  5. Pythagoras. One-One. August 12, 2017 at 5:07 pm #

    1) Issue no.1 is that the majority of residents are not property owners hence not paying rates. 2) issue 2 is that council wage bill is unjustifiably too big. 3) issue 3 is council is not delivering expected service to residents. 4) issue 4 is that the councilors lack business creativity, hence will never be in possession of enough money for any purpose

  6. NACIDO RICO August 12, 2017 at 5:51 pm #

    Another point is, to employ qualified whites into positions of: Town clerk, Treasurer, director of works, director of health, etc. Whites are not corrupt, greedy, nepotists incomparison to blacks. Whites are competent and hardworking incomparison to blacks. Black council directors only think of buying top of the range cars and nothing else. Smith’s white regime installed water and sewer pipes which we are still using today, imagine. The black council never installed any durable pipes. Council directors should think of other ways of collecting revenue.

    • SIMBA August 13, 2017 at 9:03 am #

      GO & BUY A ROLLS ROYCE

  7. pm August 12, 2017 at 9:49 pm #

    there is no business to write home about everyone owes everyone. even the country has zvikwereti we residents we need to unite and have one voice.let’s get our own lawyers also to fight this. hapana munhu asingadi kubhadhara zvikwereti but things in here are not just working

  8. shumbasamaita August 13, 2017 at 5:52 pm #

    The kind of confusion & disorder the Mayor & his councilors are showing is unacceptable. It now looks this debt collector is being used to fund their own life-styles and channel the funding to a bankrupt MDC.

  9. wonder mugota August 14, 2017 at 10:36 am #

    chokwadi chiripo maLandlords havasi kubhadhara mari kucouncil maroja tinongobhadhariswa mari yeRent but ivo havana kana action yavanoita kucouncil.ukatononoka kubhadhara mari vanopenga zvisingaite but ko ivo vavane makore mangani vasinga bhadhare mitero…i really support Wellcash to do the work as long there is transparency and accountability..tanzwa kubhadhariswa maRent asi pasina mari inoenda kuCouncil..of coz as a lodger am entitled to pay for my accomodation but maLandlords ane utsotsi

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