• August 9th, 2020

Finance ministry commends pro bono services to implement relief package

Staff Reporter

The Ministry of Finance has commended collaborating institutions for volunteering their services to implement the recently-announced multi-faceted economic stimulus and relief package. The objective of the package is to promote the achievements of the health and safety benefits of the lockdown measures and to mitigate the negative economic and social impacts of the measures to contain further spread of the coronavirus.
“The finance ministry is collaborating with institutions who have volunteered their resources and infrastructure to work collaboratively with the government to fight and defeat Covid-19 in our country. As such, in the roll-out of the announced emergency income grant for Namibians who have no jobs or lost their jobs or income due to the Covid-19 outbreak, Mobile Telecommunications Namibia (MTC), Deloitte Namibia, MobiPay and commercial banks have offered their services pro bono, that is, at their own cost and free of any cost to the government,” read a statement by finance ministry spokesperson Tonateni Shidhudhu.  In the statement, Shidhudhu noted the ministry is aware of allegations circulating on social media, purporting that some of the collaborating institutions were preferentially selected. Said Shidhudhu: “In particular, it was alleged that Mobicash Payment Solutions (Pty) Ltd was selected because it is allegedly owned by friends of the Head of State and government, President Hage Geingob. The ministry wishes to dismiss this allegation in the strongest terms. It is an allegation with no iota of truth and it is only insidiously made to cast aspersions on the person of His Excellency, the President. Its authors made no attempt to seek information from the ministry nor to verify facts on the working arrangements put in place”. 
He continued that notwithstanding their spirit of patriotism solidarity, corporate social responsibility and whole-of-society approach to defeating Covid-19, these collaborating institutions have the necessary infrastructure to support the smooth rolling-out of the grant on the back of their advances in information and communication technology. 
“The ministry has thus not entered into procurement contracts with these service providers, but only into mutual collaboration arrangements to serve the public good during this time of national need,” said Shidhudhu. 
Regarding the rollout of government’s relief package, MTC Namibia will receive, process and build a database of self-nominated beneficiary applications remotely; MobiPay will run validation checks on the database of beneficiaries and distribute tokens to commercial banks; Deloitte, as an independent auditor, will audit the data validation and systems of MobiPay, as well as the payments by commercial banks, and commercial banks will make payments to beneficiaries through e-wallet services. 
“The ministry wishes to commend these institutions for their patriotism and for heeding the national call on partnerships and collaboration. We look forward to working together with all other national institutions, development partners and individuals who have offered their service, knowledge products and financial assistance during this state of emergency and beyond,” Shidhudhu added. 

Staff Reporter
2020-04-08 09:35:17 | 4 months ago

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