Friday 19 December 2008

Christmas presents

It's time for some early Christmas presents. Consumer Watchdog is feeling very generous and has identified a small number of lucky recipients of our generosity.

Furniture stores

Not all of you, just a few. We've written a letter on your behalf. We've written to the President, confessing on your behalves that you have contempt for the laws and therefore the people of Botswana. You know perfectly well that when you offer something for sale on credit or hire purchase you must clearly disclose the full credit price as well as the cash price. Yes, you all say things like “Deposit P470, P427 x 24 months” but that's simply not enough. The Control of Goods (Marking of Goods) Regulations 1974 say very clearly in Clause 6 that in addition to those details you must also state “in characters of a similar size”:

“the total amount to be paid by way of deposit and instalments”

You all know this, yes you do. We know you know this because we've told you. We've written about it here in Mmegi repeatedly, we've written to all your Managing Directors, we've even had meetings with some of you but you have not heeded our advice.

You continue to advertise illegally and we can only conclude that you simply don't care about the laws of Botswana. Some of you even have the outrageous cheek to claim to be compliant with the South African National Credit Act. Who cares? We're not in South Africa, we're our own, sovereign nation with our own laws but some of you clearly don't give a damn about that. You really do seem to think that our laws don't matter.

You are operating illegally and we've written to the President confessing your guilt on your behalf.

Don't bother thanking us, it's Christmas.

Success University

You are also getting a letter written on your behalf. Actually three of them.

Just in case you've forgotten to do so yourselves we've written a letter to the Commissioner of the Botswana Unified Revenue Service announcing the formation of your organisation in Botswana and explaining how you operate. We've explained that you use a pyramid structure to sell a range of second-rate personal improvement and motivational claptrap to the gullible. We've also explained that each person in the pyramid can earn bonuses based on the volumes sold beneath him. We've explained that if your promises are anything to go by, some of these people can earn lots of money. Income that will be taxable. Taxable income that will need to be declared to the really rather professional people at BURS.

We've also written to the Registrar of Companies on your behalf just checking to see whether you are in fact registered as a company in Botswana. We've also written to the Tertiary Education Council regarding your use of the word “University” in your name. After all, some people might think you are a university, don't you think? I'm sure you wouldn't want anyone misled, would you?

Don't bother thanking us, it's Christmas.

Traditional doctors

You are also getting some letters written by us on your behalf.

We've written to the Minister of Health describing how you offer medical treatments without actually being qualified to do so.

We've written to the Commissioner of Police regarding the fact that you advertise medicines which is actually a criminal offence in Botswana. Sections 396-399 of the Penal Code forbid anyone other than a medical journal from advertising medicines.

We've also explained in the letter that describing yourselves as “doctors” is a form of cheating, also outlawed by the Penal Code. The letter also explains that by “pretending to tell fortunes”, which almost all of you do, is yet another criminal offence.

We also couldn't overlook the more outrageous services you offer. In our phone calls to some of you you've offered to have our made-up rivals suffer misfortune, illness and even death. You are a bunch of crooks and you should be given a free stay at one of our very welcoming correctional institutions.

Finally, as a special seasonal gift, we've given your details to the Immigration Department because you almost certainly forgot to declare your planned occupation when you entered Botswana. They can offer you a free trip home although it might not be as comfortable as you might wish.

Don't bother thanking us, it's Christmas.

Enforcement agencies

Lastly, here's a present for all those parts of the Public Service who are tasked with enforcing the law but who fail to do so.

Our present is us. We're going to continue highlighting your failure to perform. We're going to continue writing and broadcasting about the times you just can't seem to be bothered to do your job. We can't actually do anything about that of course but we know a man who can!

We've written to him on your behalf with some suggestions for ways of either improving your performance or for replacing you with bodies that can actually achieve something.

Don't bother thanking us, it's Christmas.

This week’s stars!
  • Ishmael at HiFi Corporation for great customer follow-up.

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