Sandton I WRITE IN CONNECTION with an issue that’s arisen with Cell C and its telesales team. Cell C, via its telesales, initiated a stop order (debit order) on one of my company accounts without any specific or implied authority or any regard for FICA requirements. It was an individual who was not an employee, officer or member of the CC.
As we have a number of contracts with Cell C it was picked up after R20 000 had been charged to the bank account. I duly notified Cell C’s customer relations of the matter, established who had originated the stop order and laid a charge of fraud with the Mthatha police. That was as per Cell C’s instructions and that once they had that they would refund the amount.
Cell C then responded that it wasn’t liable to refund us, as the bank account when checked was a valid account and therefore not its mistake. Repeated discussions regarding the governance procedure that company accounts require two signatures on stop/debit orders and resolutions authorising signatories, etc, were ignored. That in my opinion ignores any governance issues, company procedures, FICA requirements, etc. Cell C has further denied that it’s its responsibility to verify that the person accepting its offering has authority to contract on the bank account. As long as Cell C has verified the bank account is a valid account, you’re accepted.
I’ve arranged for summons to be issued against Cell C on the basis that, as the bank account is in Mthatha, that’s where jurisdiction is – after all, their call centre could be in India.