Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Has Telkom Kenya really changed....?

After having spent the whole of yesterday, getting all the paraphernalia of having a 'fixed' telephone line and paying for it, nobody from Orange Telkom (previously known as Telkom Kenya), came to install the line. Why?

After all, they had promised me that it would be installed today and I spent the whole of today waiting for them. First, I was told by the technician, Mwaro, that he would come at 1.00 pm as he was very busy elsewhere. One wonders if they have only one guy to cover the whole of Mombasa.

Well, 1.00 pm came and passed, but, nobody showed up nor did anybody from Orange Telkom have the courtesy to call. So, I did, instead. To enquire first from the techy himself who told me that he was on his way and would be at my place soon. So, I waited some more and when more than half an hour came and went, this time I called various Orange Telkom numbers which were given to me by one of their staff.

This because, their latest directories, do not have a single Orange Telkom number listed anywhere in their glossy pages. And when one starts making enquiries about these numbers and if by mistake, thinking that 991 is a toll-free number, one makes a nasty discovery that it is not! You're charged for calling this number, so BEWARE!!! This is a directory enquiry number and it is an insult to injury when the directory that Orange Telkom publishes is deficient in giving this very important information - their telephone numbers. I wonder if they really deal with telecommunications.....?!

Anyway, to cut a very long and frustrating story short and after having even called their Nairobi number to get some 'action', my phone line has still not been installed and I wonder when it will ever be, for that matter.

I cannot spend my days being dictated to by so-called 'service' providers, i.e. that I cannot go where I want, when I want, just because these horrors cannot keep their word or time. That I have to stick around at home in the hope that somebody will come to install my phone IF, they feel like it. Otherwise I can go jump in the ocean for all they care. It does not matter to these incompetent people that I, too, might have certain important work to do and appointments to keep and I, unlike them, do not want my reputation to be spoiled by not doing so.

Therefore, I wonder now, when and IF, they are going to come. I have a nasty feeling that despite having told them that I will not be available on Wednesday, they will show up tomorrow, and then when I have to chase them away use the excuse that I was not available....., or not there!

So, as far as I and many others are concerned - while Telkom Kenya might have changed it's name to Orange Telkom, they have not changed their attitude one bit!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Persistent outages in Nyali....

Every couple of days, there are outages and/or fluctuations in Nyali. Why?

When we ring the emergency, after asking for the account number, they will tell you that they are sending somebody over. Now, considering the traffic jams on the one and only access road to Nyali, the bridge, one wonders how long this would take from the other side of the Island, for an emergency truck to make it's way all across town in the most awful traffic situations just getting through town.

Therefore, I have a couple of suggestions for KPLC.

1. They open an emergency office in Nyali to deal with the persistent outages here. They seem to be happening every couple of days. How come?

2. They also get their act together and deal with whatever is ailing the Nyali connections. Solve the problem immediately and in the process will not have to waste time and money on petrol and resources to make their way across town to deal with emergencies every other day.

Since they charge us an arm and a leg for this incompetent 'service', they really should solve this persistent problem once and for all or, as I said before, we'll all get together and sue the company for all the damage their outages and fluctuations cause to our electrical gadgets.

And they should also, with immediate effect reduce their tariffs that they charge for their shoddy service.

Btw, I've just rung them up about a half hour ago for the latest outage and am still waiting for the power to be restored. I'm working on battery power. Also, many of their numbers go unanswered. Why? They seem to have no explanation or reply to give to their consumers, I think!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Unlawful eviction by our Council

I've spent New Year's eve in the worst manner one can possibly imagine. Thanks to various senior officers of the Council.

I was about to have lunch with my elder sister on that day, when I got a phone call from a close friend informing me that some people had broken into my Council flat in Nyerere Estate (C5), and my things being taken out, etc., by the 'new' occupant with the help of these senior officers of the Council.

Since I've paid my rent in advance till March 2010, this was gross impunity on their part. Also, I've had nothing from the Council to give me notice of this action of theirs or why they would do such a thing. After all I've been living in that place for over 30 years! I've never defaulted on rent paying, either. Therefore, one wonders what and WHY this was done.

And why choose New Year's eve to do this? When none in officialdom would be available for questioning....? With a long weekend for the new occupants to nicely settle themselves in with no interference from any law enforcer/s.

I've spent most of last week trying to get some answers to this gross violation my rights and abuse by the Council to no avail.

I first went, on Monday, in the company of Munir Mazrui from MUHURI, to the Council's housing manageress, Ms. Miriam Moka(?), at her Buxton offices, but, she told us to go and see the Director of Housing and Social Services. This person, unfortunately, had not reported for work that day, and he told us (via phone with the housing manageress), to go and see the Town Clerk.

This, we did, that same afternoon. After sitting in his outer office for nearly an hour, we were told to wait further in his 'inner' outer office! This too, we did and after making us wait further, he deemed it fit to see us, at long last.

Mr. Mazrui showed him my receipts that the Council had issued me with when making my latest payment for February and March 2010 on December 24th 2009, and asked him why I had been evicted. We were told that he (town clerk), did not know anything about this issue and that he would have to investigate. So, could we please, come back on Wednesday, 6th January 2010 at 10.00 am to his offices?

We did exactly that, but, when we got there on the hour, we were told that he was out and could we wait as he was going to come back shortly? Therefore we waited some more... The Town Clerk at long last made his appearance after nearly an hour of us waiting, but, did not even acknowledge our presence or give an apology for not being there for his 10.00 am appointment with us. Instead, he made us wait some more.

After about twenty to thirty minutes further of waiting after his arrival, we were told to go into his 'inner' outer office to wait some more and which we did. When it started getting to nearly 12.00 noon (we'd been waiting for nearly 2 hours!), and with no sign of him calling us in to discuss this issue, Mr. Mazrui and I decided that enough was enough and we left.

This Town Clerk, despite seeing us seated there in his 'inner' outer office when he came out a number of times, did not even acknowledge our presence leave alone apologize for his being late for his appointment with us that he himself had made with us two days before. What impunity is this?

Also, our next stop was to a lawyer's office right across from the Council who has since delivered a notice letter to the Town Clerk to explain the Council's actions regarding my eviction and the fate of all my stuff that was in the flat. Despite, there being no 7 day notice, but, instead it says with immediate effect, there's been no word forthcoming from that direction. Why?

This action by the Council is gross impunity by our Public Officer/s and highly irresponsible, too. But, in this country, the high and mighty ALWAYS get away with every kind of violation, unfortunately. There is no justice and there is no law here, anymore....., is there?

And what happens to all the damage to my reputation, flat, it's contents (my possessions), and the 3 months of this year that I've paid in advance in rent? Have the present occupants also stolen that with my name, etc? We have 'official' thieves, also, it seems who can break and enter any premises they feel like and take over throwing the rightful tenants out in the cold. What kind of precedent is this Council and it's 'officers' setting? The law of the Jungle seems to be prevailing in that direction.

Will I ever see justice done and compensation paid for this gross impunity by the Council?