Saturday, 13 January 2018

The Voice - Consumer's Voice

Is it her fault?

I have a friend who is having a hard time. She bought a mini laptop with Higher Purchase and she had been paying monthly and was supposed to have finished her payments by last year December. The problem is she told me yesterday that they called her some time last week telling her they hadn’t received money from her since August of 2017. My friend had gone to the bank to do a stop order for the installments and had for the first three months had issues with the payments going through because she would receive SMS’s notifying her that payments were unsuccessful. So she would call them to find out what the problem was but would be informed that no, the payments were in fact successful, so even after that time she would ignore the SMS prompts. So when they called her last week she asked why they hadn’t called her since August to ask why she wasn’t paying but waited for so many months, and she was informed that they tried calling her once but that they were unable to. The real problem is that she knows the outstanding balance is due and has to be paid either way, but she has a problem with the fact that she also has been informed that she has to pay penalty fees on top of the outstanding balance, and these penalties date back to August 2017. Should she have to pay these penalties when she has made efforts to make sure payments are made and is it upon her to call them every month to make sure that they have drawn their money?

Unfortunately, your friend is in a difficult situation. Although a stop order is a very convenient way to pay instalments like these, you can’t always rely on the bank to make sure it happens correctly. Here’s a secret that you might not know. Banks make mistakes. Quite often. However, whether the bank made a mistake or the store failed to warn your friend that she had fallen behind with her payments, the responsibility for making sure the payments are made remains with her. The stop order is just a convenience offered by the bank and if she checks the small print of her banking agreement, and also probably of the hire purchase agreement, shell see that it’s up to her to make sure payments are made.

I know it sounds incredibly irritating but it’s up to you, me and your friend to check every month that our payments go through. Frustrating, I know, but that’s how it is.

Meanwhile I suggest your friend speaks to the store to agree a plan to pay off the missing instalments. If you like we’ll contact the store to see if they can be a little charitable about the penalties.

Will I make money from AIM Global?

I need your help, Do you know anything about the company called AIM Global? We are struggling out there to try and come up with ways of earning extra cash but not willing to be scammed. Thanks in advance.

AIM Global is a pyramid scheme based in the Philippines. They claim that people joining can earn large amounts of money, simply by marketing the scheme to other potential recruits. One recruiter claimed that by paying P2,543 to join and then by recruiting just two people, each of whom recruited two more people and every month that was repeated, after a year you would have monthly earnings of over P1.6 million. It’s interesting to note that in this claim they don’t even mention whether there’s a product at the heart of their scheme. That’s clearly nonsense and it’s a very good example of a pyramid scheme, where earnings are made exclusively or mainly from the recruitment of other victims rather than the sale of products.

In fact they DO market a product and that’s even worse than the pyramid scheme. They call this “C247” and they say that this single product can treat 100 different medical conditions including asthma, diabetes, cirrhosis, bone fracture, deafness, endometriosis, epilepsy, heart diseases, hypertension, low sperm count, “toxins in the body”, stroke, migraine and even cancer and “immunodeficiency”. These are illegal claims, forbidden by Sections 396-399 of the Penal Code of Botswana. Anyone making such claims is going to be in dep trouble when the authorities hear they’ve been made.

I’ve also seen AIM recruiters claim that this ridiculous C247 product has been approved by the authorities in Botswana, including the Ministry of Health and the Botswana Bureau of Standards. These claims are completely untrue.

I urge you not to waste your time, effort and money joining a pyramid scheme like AIM Global. You’ll lose it all!

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