Botswana Power Corporation (BPC), the power parastatal, is in the process of sub contracting new companies, with the capacity to further expand the distribution and selling of electricity in the country.
BPC Public Relations Officer (PRO), Spencer Moreri, confirmed this and said the initiative is part of the corporation’s strategy to increase electricity selling points and introduce new vending channels, following customer complaints about the limited retail outlets selling electricity in some places.
BPC has been solely responsible for distributing electric power throughout the country.
Moreri said companies to take over the obligation of distribution and vending from BPC are, by the end of March 2012, expected to start selling electricity through new channels such as internet, bank ATM’s and mobile phones.
He said in addition to the current mobile company that is providing the communication service “the corporation is considering having some kind of a back up service from another mobile network provider so that vending machines can always vend using the strongest network signal.”
“The appointed parties would also buy in bulk and upfront from BPC then appoints merchants or retailers to sell to the end customer,” he said.
In its bid to make the vending channels more convenient and improve service delivery to customers, the PRO said the companies are also expected to vend through 24 hour filling stations and chain stores country wide.
He noted that the procurement process is still going through authorization and after bidding for the tender the current vendors will be a major consideration since the Corporation would seek to ensure that they are not disregarded by the new initiatives. The appointed parties will then be expected to implement the initiative in phases.
Though he declined to give the costs associated with the initiative, Moreri said the corporation will spend minimal amount on procuring a switch to integrate the party vendors.
Moreri added that the Corporation is on negotiations with banks to extend network and channels, where the public can pay their electricity bills. “The Corporation is also exploring how e-wallets and other initiatives being introduced by mobile companies and banks can benefit customers in getting BPC services,” said Moreri.