Mmegi Online :: Consumer Watchdog, Pick N Pay educates consumers
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Last Updated
Monday 22 October 2018, 11:52 am.
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Consumer Watchdog, Pick N Pay educates consumers

Consumer Watchdog and Pick N Pay this week celebrated International Consumer Rights Day in Gaborone by campaigning for greater understanding of the rights of Botswana's consumers.
By Staff Writer Mon 22 Oct 2018, 19:54 pm (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Consumer Watchdog, Pick N Pay educates consumers








On Tuesday afternoon, members and partners of Consumer Watchdog handed out information packs on consumer rights to shoppers outside Pick N Pay at Molapo Crossing in Gaborone.

The Consumer Watchdog team also briefed consumers on their rights and explained the role of government bodies such as the Consumer Affairs Division.

Commenting on the situation in Botswana, Kate Harriman from Consumer Watchdog said, "I suspect that most people don't know how well they are currently protected.  We have a right to truthfulness, fairness and redress when it's needed'.

'We have a right to the support of the Consumer Affairs Division when things go wrong but in most circumstances things don't need to go that far.  Having a simple knowledge of the current law will normally be enough to resolve most problems shoppers face," she added.

"We chose Pick N Pay at Molapo Crossing because the team have shown themselves in the past to understand how to treat customers very well. We'll be continuing to do this with other stores we know treat Batswana with respect but sooner or later we'll pick some of the less friendly stores. Watch out!"

Pick N Pay managing director Bruce Milne was delighted to work with an organisation like Consumer Watchdog in educating the public about consumer rights.

"It reassures consumers that we are on their side. It is a way to improve our service to customers," Milne said.

He said that it

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is important that his store works hand in hand with Consumer Watchdog because it is a constructive and positive way of approaching consumer rights issues.
Milne added that it was the first time for his store to team up with such an organisation although saying that in the past they have had mystery shoppers at the store.

Harriman added that the Consumer Protection Act and the Consumer Protection Regulations do indeed provide consumers with a range of protections against shoddy treatment. 

However, she said that contract terms must be made clear, special offers must be genuine, deposits must be repaid when required and above all, goods and services must be of "merchantable quality".  They must be "fit for the purposes" for which they are sold. 

A large range of practices is declared by the regulations to be "unfair business practices" and when reported to the Consumer Affairs Division an investigation is required by the Act.
Consumer Watchdog's message to the public is "Know your rights", says Harriman, "Only when we stand up to bad service and demand our rights will the less conscientious suppliers take notice and mend their ways!"

Consumer Watchdog is a non-profit making division of Business & Enterprise Solutions Botswana (Pty) Ltd and has a weekly radio show on Yarona FM on Tuesdays at 7:30 and a weekly column in the Business Section in Friday's edition of Mmegi.

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