Harare's new billing system remains offline

By Staff reporter | 19 Aug 2019 at 22:08hrs
Harare
HARARE City Council is yet to migrate to its new SAGE Evolution billing system, which has been offline for months.

Last month, the city had a trial run of the system.

In March, Quill associates, vendors of the BIQ system, switched off council following nonpayment of monthly fees for using their software.

"There are many components of the system that the users are not satisfied with. It seems to be much harder to understand and put into practice than BIQ, which is why it has not yet been in use," said one employee of Harare City Council.

Harare Mayor Herbert Gomba told the Daily News that the city was making efforts to ensure that the new system goes live.
He said the billing system should be operating at 100 percent when it goes live to avoid all the mistakes and issues that arose from the BIQ system.

"The system is there and it has been purchased — all we are now doing is ensuring that everyone who is supposed to use the system knows how to do it. All officials at district offices should be equipped with that knowledge so that we avoid any revenue leakages that may arise," Gomba said.

HCC spokesperson Michael Chideme said residents can access their bills and make online bill inquiries through the new system.
Harare's billing system has been questioned by residents as they argue that it has too many loopholes that made it susceptible to manipulation.

Since the BIQ was switched off, council could not issue bill statements; business and finance processes were slowed down and council could not ascertain exactly how much each property in the system owed them what.

Pursuant to the cancellation, council selected alternative systems Sage 100 Evolution and Pronum — the two Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) packages for a Proof of Concept (POC).

The packages were chosen with a view to mitigate risk and to find stop gap measures that would allow council to get back all the processes to functionality.

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