February 12, 2015 By Ibrahim Tarawallie
One of Sierra Leone’s leading GSM operators, Africell Mobile Company, yesterday announced that it will change in billing its subscribers from units to leones effective Saturday February 14 (Valentine’s Day).
The company’s Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, Joe Abass Bangura, who made the pronouncement at the company’s headquarters in Freetown, stated that they are technically ready to do the conversion because “the timing is right”.
He said their staff members will be working around the clock to ensure that they have a smooth transition and to take all queries from their valued subscribers through their call center number 111.
“In consultation with our partners, and with the end of the Ebola epidemic expected very soon, we have agreed together that this is a good timing for the change of the billing system from units to leones, and that will be on Saturday midnight,” he said, while acknowledging the significant contributions of both the Ministry of Information and Communications and the regulatory body, the National Telecommunications Commission (NATCOM) with regards the success in the telecom industry.
Mr. Bangura noted that as the people look forward to a post-Ebola Sierra Leone, Africell expects to take the lead in being a model of exemplary corporate citizenship in the country, and that they will continue to play their role in the fight to achieve zero new Ebola infections.
He ended up by stating that they have over the years enjoyed a great working relationship with partners in the sector, noting: “All throughout these years, work was based on a collaborative effort with the joint view of improving the telecom sector in the country.”
In his remarks, new NATCOM Chairman, Momoh Konteh, congratulated Africell for their compliance and stated that the company had never resisted changing from units to leones, and that they have been very cooperative.
“I am here to celebrate compliance. Let me appreciate Africell for changing from units to leones,” he said.
Statement was also made by the Deputy Minister of Information and Communications, Theo Nicol, who said Africell was never coerced into converting from units to leones. “They were willing to do it,” he emphasised.