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Local businesses left hanging as Telkom lines remain down

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Businesses in Kimberley are frustrated after being left hanging with no telephone line connection from Telkom for 10 days.

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BUSINESSES in Kimberley are frustrated after being left hanging with no telephone line connection from Telkom for 10 days.

Business owners said on Monday that they are unable to get answers as to what caused the interruption and claimed that Telkom is “not making an effort to communicate with its clients”.

The interruption started on April 30 and the affected businesses are in the vicinity of Long Street, George Street, the Kimberley city centre and the Big Hole area.

For some businesses “life has come to a complete standstill” as they cannot use their phones or access the internet.

According to the owners, their businesses are suffering and they do not know how to resolve the matter or how long the lines will remain down.

They said that they have exhausted all efforts in trying to get answers as calls to the Telkom call centre go unanswered, as well as to contact numbers provided by Telkom head office.

A local guest house owner related how frustrating the situation was for businesses, especially while the city was hosting the recent Wildeklawer School tournament.

“We are frustrated as the internet interruptions came while we are already experiencing challenges of load shedding, water interruptions and bad roads. We were in a compromising situation because it seemed there was nothing special that we could offer our guests,” said the owner.

The CEO of the Northern Cape Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Nocci), Sharon Steyn, confirmed that she has received many complaints about the matter

She added that Nocci could also not get hold of Telkom.

“Nobody can tell us what the problem is. We don’t know whether this was caused by cable theft. This is so frustrating for businesses because everything is done electronically,” said Steyn.

“It’s shocking. Telkom better get something done soon because things can’t go on like this. It’s a possibility that there might have been cable theft somewhere, but they must communicate with their clients as to what the problem is.

“This error is costing the business owners as they have to pay extra for internet and telephone connections in order to keep their businesses running.

“They are going to kill the businesses, which are already going through a rough patch in our poorly-maintained city.”

Efforts to get comment from Telkom failed as calls to several contact numbers went unanswered.

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