South Africa: Vodacom Plans To Deliver Social Grants

Vodacom is currently in talks to utilise its technology to distribute social grants in South Africa.

Mickey Mashale, Vodacom Business’ Chief Sales Officer recently said that the company had been having discussions with the relevant departments on how to assist with distributing social grants to the millions of recipients through M-Pesa.

She said that she was not pre-empting that the government would agree, but she was putting it out there that Vodacom has the technology to distribute grants and is already helping governments elsewhere.
M-Pesa is currently being used to deliver grants to many displaced people in war camps.

Mashale said Vodacom was the biggest bank in Africa by virtue of its 40percent share in M-Pesa, the mobile money transfer channel that had started in Kenya and then was extended to the DRC and Tanzania, among other countries.

Presently the South African Post Office distributes social grants to 10million people after the contract between the Cash Paymaster Services and the South African Social Security Agency ended earlier this year.

The Treasury granted Vodacom the exclusive R5billion contract to be the only provider of mobile telecoms services to the government. This prompted the Competition Commission to launch an investigation into suspected abuse of power.
The tender was also aimed at meeting the government's 2016 target of decreasing non-business expenditure by R25 billion within three years.
Mashale said that Vodacom is co-operating fully with the Competition Commission’s investigation and she added that she is confident that the tender process ran above board.

Vodacom is also working on digitising 80 percent of all the national departments and over 90 percent of the Gauteng departments as part of its contract.

In conclusion, Mashale declared that Vodacom is using technology to improve administrative efficiency and better the communication between citizens and the government in an effort to support smooth service delivery.

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