Opinions Wed, 14 Apr 2010

Is Vodafone Up To The Challenge Or A Sham!

When Vodafone acquired almost 70% stake of the former Ghana Telecom in July 2008, under controversial and suspicious circumstances, the company promised to offer Ghanaians better services. Yet, almost a year since the company took over from Ghana Telecom, the only thing that has improved is the company’s propaganda machine to hoodwink Ghanaians into believing that they (Ghanaians) are receiving quality services. Below are some of the promises that Vodafone made to the Ghanaian public:

· Over the next 5 years, Vodafone expects to invest over US$500 million in its operations and network, restoring and expanding network coverage;

· Vodafone plans to leverage its experience of rapid network deployment in India and other emerging markets, its brand and successful customer propositions such as M-PESA and ultra-low cost handsets, to accelerate Ghana Telecom's growth; and

· Through these actions, Vodafone intends to deliver a superior product and service offering in the Ghanaian market.

In spite of these specific promises, Vodafone services and products delivery in telephony and broadband services have been anything but dismal. As a write this piece, residents of the Asuyeboah, Kwadaso, Tanoso and Abuakwa areas in Kumasi have been unable to get access to broadband Internet link provided to area Internet cafes and businesses in the last two (2) months due to faulty network systems at the Tanoso Exchange.

My inquiry into the cause of the unstable, very slow and non-working broadband services leads to one result- faulty Vodafone Network Exchange at Tanoso, that provides broadband services to many private organizations and schools such as Yaa Asantewaa Senior High, Prempeh College, University of Education-Winneba (UEW-K), Kwadaso Agricultural College, etc.

As a student of UEW-K, I have come to depend on a Student Representative Council (SRC) and Opoku Ware Hall cafes- located on campus for news browsing and research. But these cafes have been closed due the appalling broadband services from Vodafone.

I, therefore, take this opportunity to appeal to the management and stakeholders of Vodafone to live to its promise for quality service delivery and resolve the problem immediately. The company must understand that “the satisfied customer is best advertisement.”

Otherwise, I will entreat the government of Ghana (part owner of Vodafone), particularly the Ministry of Communications, to bring pressure to bear, as foreign companies such as Vodafone that operate in Ghana take their customers for granted, as there are no viable competitors

Long Live Ghana!

Philip Dzorke

Columnist: Dzorke, Philip