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Customers Raise Concern over Unfair Charges, Unsolicited Messages by Telecom Companies

The consumers accused telecommunication companies of providing services like caller tunes without their consent and later charging them for the service.
UCC Communications Officer Pamela Ankunda interacts with a customer

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Telephone users have petitioned Uganda Communications Commission-UCC over unfair charges by telecom companies.

This was during the World Consumer Rights Day held at the UCC headquarters at Colville Street in Kampala.

The consumers accused telecommunication companies of providing services like caller tunes to without their consent and later charging them for the service.

They also complained about being subjected to unfair charges through services like voice and data bundles.

Caroline Kimuli, a network marketer decried of the unfair charges that cheat customers. She explained how on several occasions, her voice and data bundles have been recalled by the company before they expire.

She adds that when she lodges complaints to the telecommunication company they promise to resolve the matter in vain.

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Another consumer who preferred anonymity also complained of telecom companies not answering their calls from customers.

He says that although there are some busy hours when call centres are overwhelmed with callers, it is frustrating to keep calling at different times and he is not attended to. 

He also accused the companies of disregarding the law by constantly sending unsolicited and promotional messages to customers.

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UCC has in the past warned telecom service providers and SMS media companies against sending out unsolicited messages and caller ring-back tunes.

Joseph Kizito, the UCC head of Consumer Affairs, says that complaints will be addressed to the telecommunication companies. 

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World Consumer Rights Day is celebrated every year on March 15, where customers get the chance to demand their rights to be respected and protected, and to protest against market abuses and social injustices which undermine those rights.

This year, the theme of promoted World Consumer Rights Day was “Trusted Smart Products”.  

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