Service providers in Nigeria will not shoot somebody!
A few years back we moved homes to a neighbourhood we really liked. We did not think to check for network availability until after we had moved into our beautiful house. Then the troubles started with the networks. My Airtel line would not work unless I moved about one kilometre away from the house and that was my main number; I had used it for several years. It was the line everyone knew me with. We were advised to get a Glo line as it was a more effective network in that area, we did so and it was fine-for a few weeks. Then it started fluctuating. Then we got MTN lines and there was peace. The problem though was that MTN was very expensive but we wanted to be able to keep in touch so we had to bear the cost.
After a few weeks I went to Airtel office to complain about my predicament as I wanted to remain on their network. They said were sorry but there was nothing they could do about it. Thankfully we moved homes after about fifteen months and I heaved a sigh of relief. But it was too late. Airtel told me they had destroyed my number and there was no way I could get it back.
Chai! What could I do?
I started rebuilding my contacts until everyone knew me with my MTN line. I had to update bank and other vital contacts but what other options did I have?
Then MTN started misbehaving. People would call my line and it would say it was switched off or that the number did not exist. Whenever I was at home I would initiate a call and it would not go through. If it went through I would get cut off in mid-sentence and that would be it.
It was beyond frustrating I tell you! So I bought another phone and went back to Airtel, in addition to MTN. Then Airtel started failing, and I got a dual-sim phone and got an Etisalat line and for a few months I had peace. But were my troubles over? You wish!
I lost my dual-sim phone and I went to Etisalat to try to recover my line and it was war! I left in frustration and anger. Bye-bye to that line. Then Airtel too started their wahala!
I got another Etisalat line because it was easier than recovering my old line. I had peace and kept my MTN line for old contacts sake, and all was well, for a time. Then Glo started giving 10 gigabytes of data for two thousand five hundred naira. What? When I was paying two thousand naira for only 3.5 gig from Etisalat? Na lie, I must collect my share. But I did not want to change numbers again and someone advised me to port.
So I carried my two short legs to Glo office this fine Saturday morning and spent three good hours (are there any bad hours?) submitting documents and answering questions. And they told me it could take up to twenty-four hours for me to get a response from MTN. hmmm! Okay, I would wait. Five days later I was still waiting for MTN to answer me. They finally sent me the glorious text after one week and I heaved a sigh of relief. I never learn O!
I happily inserted the Glo SIM and went through the ‘change’ process. Oya now, come and use line; no network, no nothing. I waited one day, two, three…then I went online and initiated a chat with Glo customer service. Mistake. After thirty productive minutes, the beautiful girl at the other end (please don’t ask how I knew she was beautiful, I’m trying to be kind here), told me to go back to Glo office because it had not been done! And there was nothing she could do about it. money transfer network
Chai and double chai!!
A friend told me that I was like a child that had quarrelled with both parents and I should just go back and beg MTN to take me back. Me? Eat humble pie and go back to MTN? The people I had nicknamed the Money Transfer Network?
Okay, I needed to remain in touch so I went back to look for my SIM card which I had thrown away. I inserted it, thankfully it was still active. No more porting for me. When I need to make a call I walk around and count my calories, all na exercise.
Oh, did I tell you that while I had gone to the bank to update my details the first time, my bank had continued sending text messages to the line Airtel claimed to have destroyed? They would send me email and send text to a line I no longer had. That’s how a customer paid me five hundred thousand naira and I started getting emails that I had purchased airtime. One thousand naira as disappearing from my account every few hours until I ran to the bank. And what did I get? “Madam, we are very sorry”
Has anyone had a similar experience? Abeg, how did you get out of it? Please advise me, I need to learn.