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Subscribers besiege MTN outlets over failed SIM registration

Chief Executive Officer, Sifiso Dabengwa

Some MTN subscribers who are yet to register their SIM adequately may have remained incommunicado. Little wonder those ENCOMIUM Weekly talked to at some MTN outlets were visibly agitated. Some of them narrated their predicaments to us as we went to town to feel the pulse of subscribers who have been cut off from their business partners, customers, relations, friends, etc and what they have lost to communication inhibition in naira and kobo.

2015_9$largeimg03_Sep_2015_223346957ENCOMIUM Weekly visited a branch of MTN on Thursday, December 3, 2015, at 9.30am and we spoke with some subscribers who complained bitterly about how they have been affected by the sudden change in MTN’s procedure.

We gathered from one Mr. Remilekun that MTN has just started blocking subscribers’ SIMs. “I have been receiving messages from MTN since Monday telling me that I should come and re-register my SIM. I have been to their office several times but to no avail. This is the fourth time I’m coming here. I was only given a form to fill and a number for the queue but the office attendants are not giving us audience.

“They just locked themselves in the office. It is very frustrating. Because of this, I have to skip going to office today and there is no assurance that I will get it done today. They blocked my SIM yesterday and since then I have not been able to make or receive any call and this is my business line. They should just answer us and let us get out of here.”

We spoke with Mr. Chris who said he works at NTA Star TV Network. He told us his own side of the story:

“I have been here since 5am and I’m still on the queue waiting for my turn. I took permission from my office just to make sure I get it done today and I’m still here. I do not even know what to do again because this number is my hotline. The MTN management should just find solution quickly because it is really affecting me.”

At about 1.30pm on Thursday, December, 2015, ENCOMIUM Weekly re-visited the office and we were surprised to see that the queue had not subsided. We spoke to one Miss Shola, who said she is a stylist. She told us she has been in the office since 9am. “I stopped work since yesterday so I can register my SIM, but the funny aspect is that I have registered my SIM since 2010 and they told me it was an incomplete registration. Since yesterday, I have not been able to make or receive call and my customers will be trying to reach me.”

We spoke with more people on their plight. Mrs. Chinedu, who runs an online store told us how she has been affected by the new development.

“I was disconnected yesterday and since then I have been using my husband’s phone to make calls. Even after disconnecting me they still deducted N1,500. I just recharged for my subscription (laughs). I have not been able to make or receive any call since yesterday and this festive period is time I make money.

“I cannot say how much I have lost because I make a lot of money. My prayer is that they should just answer us on time.”

Engineer Emmanuel, who is a civil servant, also spoke with us. “I cannot talk to my children, family and friends since Monday that I have been disconnected. I have a Glo line but people are not familiar with the number, only my MTN number most of my people know. I have been here very early this year to re-register and I’m still surprised they disconnected me.

“I have been using the SIM for more than 10 years now. I feel the problem is because MTN does not have a good data base and that is the cause of this problem. They should better find a solution before we act wild. Had it been I have the manager’s number, I would have called him and send some touching message to him because this is absolute stupidity.


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