The Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development has entered into a contract with BotswanaPost to facilitate the disbursement of monthly social grants to Pensioners, World War II Veterans, People with Disabilities and other vulnerable groups.
When responding to a question by Member of Parliament for Palapye, Onneetse Ramogapi, the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Eric Molale, said that he was not aware of any unfair competition brought by BotswanaPost through engaging Choppies and leaving out other chain stores.
“I have been informed that over time, through its ‘Multichannel Access Approach’ of its Smart Partnerships Model which has been in existence since 2011, BotswanaPost has over time engaged retailers such as Sefalana for three years until May 2020.”
Molale said that BotswanaPost was in the process of developing a criteria model to identify and engage small and medium enterprises to disburse social grants by 2021.
The Minister explained that there was nothing to remedy given that the Multichannel Access Approach enables BotswanaPost to explore partnerships that are not only beneficial to the company but primarily to its customers.
“With the extensive footprint of Choppies across the country, beneficiaries travel shorter distances to access services. It is worth noting that with the exception of select Choppies stores, where BotswanaPost has kiosks, BotswanaPost staff has been on-site at other Choppies stores to disburse social grants.”
He added that beneficiaries are at liberty to use their funds and where they best see fit regardless of where they receive their social grants be at the post office, Kgotla, Choppies and formerly Sefalana.
“BotswanaPost is only providing a service to disburse social grants. There is no motive to ‘tempt, lure or indirectly force’ customers to buy from Choppies as alluded, just as they are neither tempted, lured nor indirectly forced to buy other services from BotswanaPost when receiving their grants at the Post Office.