You are here: HomeWallOpinionsArticles2011 07 18Article 213944

Opinions of Monday, 18 July 2011

Columnist: Alfa, Abdur Rahman Shaban

I Just Arrived at an NCA Port

From: Abdur Rahman ‘GAVET’ Alfa

‘The brightness of the sun has given me this golden opportunity to write you this letter;’ this I recall in Primary School, was a very famous line that my young self at the time and several other colleagues used to start letters we exchanged.

Note must however be made that, perhaps consumed by the prim and prudish nature of the phrase, we cared way less about the state of the weather; simply put: whether rainy, bright shining, cloudy or foggy, in our imagination the sun was perpetually bright. Period!

So has it been with MTN particularly for the simple reason that time without number, myself and many others have hoped and at times prayed (no kidding) that the cloudy, foggy, soggy and cold treat they were serving us sometimes would change.

An executive summary of my letter to MTN: For the past last years that I have owned a phone, I chose MTN at the time; one of four networks operating within the mobile telecom sphere. There’s been ups and downs in the relationship but I think the time right to stop deluding myself of better times ahead; so do I QUIT.

And quitting I guess would be attributed to none save the now infamous mobile number portability and the free will to port; I just found one such port and have already thrown-in an anchor; its firmly rooted and for me, aint no turning back.

When you guys at MTN pride yourselves as being the largest and widest covering network, I find it a numb assertion, why? That isn’t in doubt and would not for a long time to come as their closest challengers seem to be a little far behind.

But to be the best as is said, isn’t as tedious and involving as keeping that height, albeit I trust that a multinational outfit as yours which I have chosen to resign from wouldn’t let slip your lead in the keenly competitive market you operate in.

Call drop rate are way too high, and I have wondered what sense it made if any at all that in the abundance of call credit I cannot place a call to another person, what happened by the way to picking a call and hearing nothing whiles credit run on.

In my case the straw that broke the camel’s back, was when you guys decided that for reasons best known to you mobile browsing had become more expensive than making calls, the latter which is the main reason for which majority patronize phones.

Like the toddler who has grown to become a big lad or lady, I may have sat through the process that saw you set out as Spacefon, to the times you metamorphosed into Spacefon-areeba, then to areeba.

The takeover by MTN of areeba brought to us all some measure of hope that things were going to get better, little did I know (how foolish I may have been at the time) that it was going to continue if at all get worse.

Foolish I was but no more, Oga Ikpoki, I am well aware you understand better; not as successor to Brett Goschen, but rather as a proud son of Tafawa Belewa’s homeland: the term;* “Shine your eyes.”* That one na jargon wey people for Niger de use.

I needed not a shoemaker (cobbler if you like) to have my eyes shined, but whatever it is they are shined and shined bright, brighter I admit that the existent and or non-existent sun for which we always put pen to paper.

Unto the very last issue for which moving on is so imperative in my case, how on earth can a network of some nine million subscribers and still counting employ people to sit in a call center and not pick calls of subscribers hard as they tried.

I still reiterate my point in an earlier article about how trying to reach an MTN call center is as impossible as trying to access the seat of presidency in possession of an AK 47, I find it despicable, unacceptable and disgusting (forgive my tone) but seriously it has been depressing and am excited at the prospect.

Before I round up and sign out first of this letter and then off the network, I would give a fair idea of my next destination which ironically was introduced to me via a Machiavellian advert on the part of MTN.

I would hook up most likely with one alphabet within the GAVET family – surely it would not be with G – Glo, not because they have yet to roll out their services but rather for the very petty and largely sentimental reason that they sponsor Manchester United and I am an Arsenal fan without apology, get the drift?

I’d surely pitch camp with Airtel, Vodafone, Expresso or Tigo, all of whom by your GAVET advertorials seek to put out as playing second fiddle to you; as I understand it just by virtue of subscriber and I insist ABSOLUTELY NOTHING (caps mine) whatsoever to do with service quality.

As a customer I have sat aside and watch you light the faces of the many people in your adverts but in my humble opinion, that joy had hardly ever translated to me, I am sure those guys in the papers, on radio and TV would continue to smile even as subscribers reel under pardon me Oga if I sound insulting on this: ‘Sub standard service.’

To this end, it is with utmost glee on one hand and some amount of sadness that I put together this parting message which I guess is in the best interest of what I think ideally should be the level of service a company as that which I resign from (MTN) should have offered me and several other subscribers.

You may already know this but just by way of a reminder, the National Communications Authority (NCA) says you should not try to convince me whenever it is that I try to literally flip the dial, but if at all I have a change of mind, here is my plan B, I would get myself a double chip phone, receive all my calls on the line I so passionately want to hold and with ease and as it pleases me enjoy mobile telephony services.

Enough is enough, nice knowing you and hope our paths cross sometime soon till then, stay good in your swanky yellow outfits and plush work environments.

Without any malice whatsoever: Best Wishes.

Abdur Rahman GAVET Alfa writes.

newcguide@gmail.com/ alfarsenal@yahoo.com