BCC, Ecocash mull debt collection partnership

Bulawayo City Council (BCC)

The Bulawayo City Council (BCC) is set to enter into a debt collection deal with EcoCash Holdings.

According to latest council minutes, EcoCash Holdings’ Pride Gonde, an account executive, wrote to council on March 30 proposing the partnership.

“As per our conversations with your offices as EcoCash merchants department, we would like to propose that we assist you on a drive to collect revenue from your respective clients including debtors,” Gonde’s email to council read.

“As EcoCash we would like to offer you a free SMS platform to your clients reminding them of their dues and these SMS will be targeted. As EcoCash, we will offer the platform and also issue you with daily statements for reconciliation for your billers.”

City fathers welcomed the proposal.

“The arrangement would strengthen business synergies with corporates in the city. It would increase the use of digital payment methods and improve cash and debt collection. It was cost effective as it came to council at no cost and it would increase the number of SMS notices sent to ratepayers,” the minutes read.

Councillors recommended that the council sign the partnership with EcoCash.

“The risk associated with this arrangement hinged around the issue of confidentiality related to council customers’ details and balances. Nevertheless, the benefits that would accrue to council and the related upsurge in the use of digital platforms and the increase in cash collection far outweighed the risk.”

The council is owed millions in outstanding payments by ratepayers, including governemnt departments.

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