The Rundu Urban Community Association believes procedures and mechanisms employed to collect debt have been ineffective and unfriendly to the residents.
The association made these claims during a press conference held in Rundu recently.
Rundu Town Council (RTC) contracted Redforce Debt Management to collect debts of over N$300 million from residents and business institutions who have outstanding bills.
This comes after the town council failed to collect rates and taxes from residents over the years.
Marcellus Mukuve, the chairperson of Ruca’s advisory board claims the payment process has not been smooth, particularly for senior citizens.
“Currently, people have to go to RTC, then they are referred to Redforce and then back to Rundu Town Council to settle their debts. Which is unnecessary. It seems like they do not have any mechanisms in place on how to collect this money,” Mukuve said.
Mukuve further questioned why the RTC failed to trace some residents who are in debt, which then leads to Redforce taking on the task and charging its contractor N$500 for each defaulter.
“It is ironic that the town council claims not to know some people whom they have bills with,” he questioned.
The debt collection company has so far managed to recover over N$8 million of the envisioned N$300 million. Through this contract, Redforce is expected to receive 12% from defaulters on top of what they owe the town council.
RUCA also urged the RTC to strengthen its internal debt collection systems so that they do not have to hire debt collectors to execute their work.
According to the chairperson, should they strengthen their internal debt collection department, the town council will be saving money and the residents from paying large amounts of money on top of what they owe the town council.
Efforts to obtain comment from the mayor and the acting CEO of RTC proved futile.