Vodacom has apologised to a complainant in Fochville who put up banners slamming the mobile operator’s signal in the area.
The disgruntled Vodacom customer, who doesn’t want to be named, told Fin24 in a phone interview on Friday afternoon that the banners cost R4 000 to make and that they were erected in Fochville, outside Johannesburg, at 14:00 on Thursday.
One of the three banners read: “Vodacom can not (sic) give signal/coverage to this part of Fochville,” reads one banner.
The other banners read that neither Vodacom chief executive Shameel Joosub nor the company’s staff were responding to letters about the complaint of the mobile network’s poor signal in the area.
The disgruntled customer also told Fin24 that the banners were erected because of Vodacom’s signal in the area having allegedly gone from poor to nonexistent from mid-April.
Shortly after speaking to Fin24 on Friday afternoon, the disgruntled Fochville customer then phoned Fin24 to say that Vodacom has now committed to resolving his problem.
“I received a call from Shameel Joosub, the CEO of Vodacom, from New York. He’s currently there,” the disgruntled Fochville customer told Fin24.
“He’s (Joosub) apologised for the way my complaint was handled and he is going to refund me the R4 000 for the banners …
“I will take off the banners before sunset or sundown, because they have now improved my signal vastly – temporarily – and they are now looking into permanent measures,” the owner of the banner told Fin24.
The customer explained to Fin24 that Vodacom only offered him a signal booster on Thursday, but that it is helping resolve the signal problem.
“I appreciate they cannot do permanent measures in a day; that I respect,” the customer told Fin24.
“I’m going to go out on the street now and I’m going to take them down,” he said.
Vodacom has confirmed to Fin24 that the banner owner did receive a call from Joosub.
In a statement issued earlier on Friday, Vodacom explained how the banners came about.
“The customer alerted us that in mid-April, his signal deteriorated further. Our engineers have confirmed that there were no changes to the network in the area on or around that date. We had offered to put a booster at the customer’s house, which at the time was not an acceptable solution,” Vodacom spokesperson Richard Boorman said.
“We can understand the customer’s frustration, but at this stage there isn’t another short-term solution,” Boorman added at the time.
Despite accepting Vodacom’s apology, the banner owner did tell Fin24 that Vodacom did not help him in April as the company states.
“I said to you earlier that Mr Boorman was not correct that Vodacom offered me assistance: I still stick to that,” said the complainant.
Nevertheless, Vodacom told Fin24 that the situation regarding the complaint is now being resolved.