The Sierra Leone Water Company (SALWACO) and the Leadership of the Africell Mobile Money Service, Afri Money have unveiled an online payment platform for all SALWACO customers and clients. The event which took place at the SALWACO Head Office at Tower Hill Freetown on Friday May 24th, 2024 attracted several dignitaries including Sierra Leone’s Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation.

Joe Ansu Foray, Human Resources Manager of SALWACO called the meeting to order and informed that the launch of the payment platform is a step in the right direction.

In his welcome address, Apostle Dr. Albert Harrison Harvey, Deputy Managing Director of SALWACO said that the thrust of the launch among other things is to optimize revenue generation and for the efficiency of the company. He informed that the significant milestone which has been achieved is a continuation of the company’s journey towards excellence, reduce burden and error, promote transparency and accountability, give convenience and satisfaction to customers and to see that SALWACO continues to lead by example.

SALWACO’s Managing Director, Ing George Lamin Vandi said that the launch is a move to continue to carry out the reengineering of the company. He remarked how management is continuity and that his leadership looks forward to implementing several progress strategies and approaches. He further spoke on the emergence of new units and departments at SALWACO all of which he said are aimed at making sure that the institution continues to deliver on its mandate. He added that the launch is a development-oriented processes and encouraged that the platform is fully used for the purpose for which it has been created.

Raymond Komba, Ag. Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources and Sanitation said that the move by SALWACO is worthy of emulation and called for a judicious usage of the platform.

Head of Water Regulatory Commission, Dr. Emmanuel Mannah stated that with a focus on revenue generation, collection and revenue security should be paramount. He said that it is therefore necessary to monitor the pilot phase of the launch and to see that there is coordination and work to monitor compliance. He also encouraged Afri Money to work with others, departments and agencies noting that the effort is very laudable.

Director of Afri Money, Martison Obeng-Agyei described the launch as a very important partnership, emphasising how water forms part of daily lives of all and sundry. He said that moving with digital platforms is highly recommended and encouraged, adding that institutions the world over were now implementing digitalized concepts and approaches. He said that the platform and the event are critically important whiles appreciating the support and team work his team enjoyed from the Water ministry and SALWACO. He assured that they are ready and willing to sort the challenges as they show up from time to time.

One of the Board Members of SALWACO, Madam Rosaline McCarthy who represented the Board Chairman stated that the launching of the platform is a remarkable achievement. ‘The theme for today’s event which is Leveraging on Digitization to Enhance SALWACO’S Efficiency and Sustainable Service Delivery is largely in line with the theme of the 2023 SALWACO retreat which was held in Kenema. It was captioned as Revenue Generation for Sustainable Development,’ she informed. ‘With digitization, SALWACO will save time, energy and resources because anyone could be at his or comfort and pay for water rates. Whiles this is laudable, I call on the leadership of Afri Money to ensure that enough Afri Money points of sales and access are placed in all SALWACO areas of operations. This will help to make things easier and better,’ she added.

Delivering the Keynote, Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Dr. Sao-Kpato Hannah Max-Kyne stated that with the addition of the sanitation to the Water Resources ministry, the scope has now been widened. Enhanced partnership between the public and private sector is highly recommended, she said.

Water and Sanitation will greatly help achieve the goal of President Bio and the government of Sierra Leone, adding that the pioneering collaboration between SALWACO and Afri Money is a step in the right direction. She said that water is not just a necessity, but a human rights issue, noting that the completion of a seven-year strategic plan of the ministry equally captured all of such pivotal aspirations.

She said that there is power in digitization and that it is more than just a trend, adding that enhancing professional and smooth efficiency are also some other virtues of the collaboration.

This will be a system of trust because it has the ability to ensure the promotion of financial inclusion as there would be invaluable insights to customer behavior and the ushering of a new era in public service delivery in Sierra Leone, she said.

To pay for SALWACO Water Bill, simply dial via Afri Money – *161*2*11*11#


   Copyright –Published in print in Expo Times Newspaper on Friday, May 27th , 2024 (ExpoTimes News – Expo Media Group (