There’s a turf war currently ongoing in the country and unlike in most others, this isn’t about drugs or prostitution. It’s a TELECOM war, my dears and some generals are taking the piss in their desperate bid to claim customers and eat into our meagre salaries.
Last Thursday, I was sitting in my office when this number (054-430-2037) called me. A lady by the name of Patricia informed me that she was calling from MTN, thanked me for my patience in advance (if only she’d known I was having a bad day and in a foul mood) and then went on to list the benefits of porting to MTN. I have to be honest, I do not recall the supposed benefits but Samuel Dowuna sums things up nicely here.
I’ve got to say I was surprised. I’m an Airtel customer; have been from the very second they landed on our shores and I’m very happy with their service. I did not get why or how MTN had the brass bits to call me on my cellphone and ask me to port to their network. I told Patricia I wasn’t interested and that I wasn’t impressed by this aggressive advertising. She thanked me and we said our goodbyes.
After reading the daily graphic however, I figured out why they were doing this and had a real good laugh. MyJoyOnline posted the article the next day “MTN, tiGO lose market share”. Out of curiosity I called Patricia back. She insisted that yes, she was an MTN employee and could be located at the head office. Yes, I should come over there and ask for her, I can confirm that she does indeed work there. She informed me that she has been provided with a list of Airtel numbers and has been tasked with dialling them up and informing them of the benefits of switching to MTN.
According to Patricia, all the Telcos are using this aggressive method to get people to switch to their services. MTN has simply decided to lay back and relax so while the others are putting up posters and making noise to the general public, they target individuals. “Oh you don’t have to come to our office”, she says, “we’ll meet you anywhere you want and do it for you”.
Seriously? Provided that Patricia isn’t playing some silly game with a supposedly endless supply of credits her cocaine dealer sugar daddy has provided her, MTN in my opinion has gone too far. Invading on an individual’s privacy to advertise your services is not right. In their minds, they think it’s tele marketing and legal and therefore right. But I disagree with them. When I was in Memphis and had people calling my house, it wasn’t that they’d identified me as a member of the competition and wanted me to switch services, it was simply them calling and asking me if I used a particular service say, “water” and what did I think about water? Would I then be interested in trying out “milk”? No one ever called my house saying, “I know you’re a coke sniffer but let me tell you that crack is better and you should switch to that”.
I really feel that MTN has gone too far with this campaign of theirs. Airtel isn’t calling up MTN subscribers on their cellphones and asking them to port. I can’t vouch for tiGO and Vodafone as I do not use their services. I think it’s a low down dirty game they’re playing and have to say this clearly. MTN GET YOUR SHIT TOGETHER!!!! I see now why you’ve not been spending money to advertise porting to your network.
There’s a reason why they’re called the “Most Troublesome Network” and they’ve just gone and proved it once more. Is this the same MTN that said they were committed to Mobile number portability and wouldn’t make trouble? I get it, you dropped a couple of points on the market and want to redeem yourselves. Someone on top said “fix this” and someone went overboard and gave the order to hit ’em where the sun don’t shine but I can’t excuse this sort of behaviour. It’s not ethical!!! It may be legal but it’s most unethical! It’s time MTN played this game right. God protect them if Glo should get their shit together. If MTN cannot face healthy competition from Airtel, how are they going to handle Glo, which has already cleared them out of one or two West African countries? MTN has already received a warning for their ambush advertising. I figured they’d learn from that.
I’ve reported this incident to Airtel (given them the name and number) and this is my two cents thrown into the fray. I think that it’s only fair that they know what their competition is doing. I also think that it’s time that the NCA checked what these TELCOS are up to. Never mind that it’s legal, I haven’t had to deal with telemarketers in Ghana and am damn happy for that. I insist that we keep things that way.
Have you had any telco call you up and ask you to switch from your network to theirs? Please let me know. Just drop a comment down below. I especially want to know from other networks if Airtel is lying to me. If MTN or any other network has pulled this stunt on you, let me know. As always, there’s two sides to a coin. I’d like to know what’s happening on the other team.