I officially hate Econet!
My frustration with them has been growing for some time now. It started with the Ecocash services. It dawned on me that whenever I want to make an Ecocash transaction, I have to pray to the network gods for my transaction to go through on the fifth try; anything before that is unheard of. And it’s my money that I’m trying to send! Why does it have to be so complicated?
And then we talk about their so called Unlimited Whatsapp bundles. (The basic idea is that you pay $3 a month and for that month have unlimited credit to text, receive videos and other media, all on Whatsapp) I bought my bundles with a lot of skepticism. I thought it was another one of Econet’s ploys to get into my pocket. And turns out it is. Because whenever I want to download a picture or a video, “Network Conditions [NEVER] allow”.
You also have their spam texts. Everything from EcoSave to Steward Bank to phone handsets. And the worst thing is it doesn’t seem like I can unsubscribe from this. I have tried, all to no avail.
But the true slap to the face came today. I was tasked with setting up a work Whatsapp phone from which to communicate with our students. I have the phone now but set aside today to get the sim card. And so at lunch Lindi and I walk to Econet First Street. I am registering card in someone else’s name and so I took a copy of their ID. (Would make sense I thought). On arrival, they told me I’d need to get a copy of my ID as well. I was slightly annoyed but thought to myself that it was partially my fault because I hadn’t checked the requirements before going in. So I go back to the office and after an hour I’m back at Econet, ready to purchase a Sim card.
At this point I should let you know that the queue is long. Like longer than Adolph Blaine Charles David Earl Frederick Gerald Hubert Irvin John Kenneth Lloyd Martin Nero Oliver Paul Quincy Randolph Sherman Thomas Uncas Victor William Xerxes Yancy Zeus Wolfeschlegelsteinhausenbergerdorffvoralternwarengewissenhaftschaferswessenschafewarenwohlgepflegeundsorgfaltigkeitbeschutzenvonangreifendurchihrraubgierigfeindewelchevoralternzwolftausendjahresvorandieerscheinenwanderersteerdemenschderraumschiffgebrauchlichtalsseinursprungvonkraftgestartseinlangefahrthinzwischensternartigraumaufdersuchenachdiesternwelchegehabtbewohnbarplanetenkreisedrehensichundwohinderneurassevonverstandigmenschlichkeitkonntefortplanzenundsicherfreuenanlebenslanglichfreudeundruhemitnichteinfurchtvorangreifenvonandererintelligentgeschopfsvonhinzwischensternartigraum, Senior’s name long! And that’s a pretty long name. I feel I should also say that I am not very patient. I hate waiting in general.
But I wait silently in this queue.
An hour later, I am about 3 people away from getting served. ( It really shouldn’t have taken that long to get served but for some reason that I still cannot fathom, only 2 of the 11 or so chairs that are supposed to contain Econet Employees, are actually filled.)
I am happy that I am actually about to get served and get out of there.
Then one of the two women stops typing, gets up and walks towards her coworker, whispers something, walks back to her seat and then boldly announces; “Sorry vabereki. Our network has gone down. We do not know how long it will be down for but you are free to wait it out.”
I am literally drained of all power at this stage. Before I can ask one of the two ladies for a more definitive answer about how long this system could actually be down for, one of them disappears out of sight, and the other starts an animated conversation behind her computer screen (Maybe someone told her sound doesn’t carry through computer screens.) So after an hour and a half of my life, I still don’t have a sim card.
This is the last straw because before today the only thing that Econet has been stealing is just my money (while giving me giving me sub par services). I can always make more. But today. Today they just took an hour and a half of my life that I will never get back. That’s an unforgivable sin in my eyes.
P.S Monday morning, I will be make my way to Telecel. See how the grass looks on the other side. (Though at this rate, I will take a piece of bare, arid land over Econet’s fertiliser-induced green. psssk)