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Business News of Sunday, 18 October 2015

Source: GNA

Payment of school feeding caterers on e-zwich begins


The government through the Ghana School Feeding Programme, has started paying caterers though e-zwich.

This is to ensure transparency and dispatch in the payment of the service providers. It would also ensure a proper audit trail and cut back on the human interface to reduce the incidence of malfeasance.

President John Dramani Mahama during the opening of a two-day high level conference on National Anti-corruption Action Plan in Accra last year, said various government institutions were going to commence using the e-zwich platform for payments as part of efforts to fight corruption.

A little less than a year after that promise, the school feeding caterers are being paid electronically using the e-zwich biometric smart card as well as mobile money platforms. This follows the payment of all National Service personnel on their e-zwich card which began much earlier in December last year.

GhIPSS together with banks have been enrolling caterers who do not have the biometric smart card and a significant number of caterers have so far received payments on their e-zwich card.

Payments through the e-zwich platform are swift and instantly hit the card of the recipient taking away the long and sometimes cumbersome payment procedure of the past.

Business Development Manager at GhIPSS Mary Dei-Sarpong who confirmed the payment to journalists urged the recipients to use their cards for other transactions such as money transfer and payment for goods and services on the gh-link hybrid Point of Sales terminals.

“The e-zwich card enables you to enter any bank at all and get service, or use the POS or even e-zwich compliant ATMs, this convenience and the security feature makes it an exciting experience for these caterers and users of the card, she explained.

The School Feeding Programme begun in late 2005 with 10 pilot schools, drawn from each region of the country. By August 2006, it had been expanded to 200 schools covering 69,000 pupils in all 138 districts.

Currently more than 1.7 million school children in 4,952 schools are covered.