Friday 13 June 2014

The Voice - Consumer's Voice

Dear Consumer’s Voice #1

On 4th June I went to a shop at Station Plaza that sells German print clothing. The shop has been owing me a refund of P200 since February 2012. Every time I ask for my refund, the sales lady tells me to come some other time because they don’t have money. In March this year the lady told me to come on a Wednesday at 3pm but when I got to the shop on the agreed day and time, I was told the same old story. The lady promised to give me a call me when my money is ready but two months passed still waiting for her call. Yesterday I went to the shop to express my unhappiness at the way I was being treated. The lady started shouting at me at the top of her voice in front of other customers telling me that the she is not the owner of the business and that she will refund me at her own time.

May you please assist in informing the owners of the business about the abuse and humiliation I received from their employee and I also need an apology from the lady for verbally abusing and frustrating me for such a long time with a mere P200 refund.

You are remarkably patient. In fact you are far too patient. Being forced to beg for a refund you are owed for two years is completely unacceptable. Don’t the store have any idea of how to treat their customers?

This is actually a very simple situation. They owe you P200 and all they have to do is give it to you. Is their business so bad that they can’t afford just P200?

You could go to the Small Claims Court who can be remarkably useful but I’m not sure that’s the best solution on this occasion.

I think the best way to fix this situation is actually very simple. We’ll get in touch with the store and ask them if they really want this sort of negative publicity. Do they really want to be famous for abusing their customers both financially and verbally? Do they really want every potential customer to walk past them?

And that business about her shouting at you in the store? Calm down, take a deep breath, count to ten and take another deep breath. Don’t bother calling the police, just do what would hurt them the most. Tell everyone you know, every friend, every relative, every colleague and everyone you meet on the street or in the bus how you were treated by them and that they shouldn’t allow themselves to be a victim of their rudeness. Make it clear to everyone that this store doesn’t deserve to have their business.

Dear Consumer’s Voice #2

I have submitted a Sony Ericsson Xperia Play smart phone to a company in February this year. The phone was working except the screen was just white and you couldn’t see anything. They told me they knew the problems and they can fix it. They attempted to fix it and it became worse such that it could not switch on after that.

They then claim they took the phone to a Sony centre for repair but since then I have been asking for my phone back they failed to give my phone back. One of the stories I was told is that the technician who took the phone to Sony centre was fired and he did not return the phone upon leaving. I have been calling the owner of the company to assist but whenever I went to his office he would promise to call and never did. Last week his phone was no longer available when I called.

Can you please assist me on this matter?

I really can’t understand why it should take four months to fix a problem with a phone. Do they know what they’re doing? Are they aware that Section 15 (1) (a) of the Consumer Protection Regulations requires that a company offers service “with reasonable care and skill”?

If the business about the technician who was fired and who didn’t return the phone when he left is true that shouldn’t be your problem. He was in the employment of the company when he took your phone and it’s up to them to either get it back from him or offer you a replacement at their expense. Whether they then recover the money from him is their problem, not yours.

We’ll get in touch with the store and see if we can’t encourage them to get on with it.

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