Keeping small change amounts to theft

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Alvine Kapitako

Windhoek-Retailers as well as food outlets that withhold small change from their clients are actually stealing from them, consumer watchdogs that spoke to New Era said.

“That is blatant theft,” remarked Bob Ziekenoppasser of the Namibia Consumer Lobby.
He suggested that customers who found that they had not received their small change should take it up with management.

Ziekenoppasser was responding to concerns brought to New Era’s attention that some KFC outlets have become notorious for not returning customer’s small change, particularly those who purchase at the ‘Drive Thru’ where they serve motorists orders while they sit in their vehicles.

The outlets singled out were KFC in Soweto, KFC opposite Wika Service station as well as the one in Kleine Kuppe

“They [outlets] have to see to it that they have enough change in the till and if the change is not sufficient the cashier should take it up with management,” Ziekenoppasser suggested.
Contacted for comment, the KFC manager for operations, who only identified herself as Liina, said the company would investigate the matter and address it.

“We are happy for that [feedback]. We must go back [to those stores] and address it,” Liina said.

She also asked clients to demand their change immediately or report such incidents to the company’s management.

“…We have managers on duty. The clients should come and raise their concerns with us. Cause a scene if you have to; it’s your 10 cents after all,” Liina said.

The Executive Director of the Namibian Consumer Trust, Michael Gaweseb said, “I have not come across such (an incident). However it sounds like a police case, because if you take a piece [of chicken] without paying for it you will be arrested.”

Gaweseb also said, “KFC does not tolerate complaints either; they have an online survey, which mean nothing to the customer”.

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