Zain Wins Nigeria 2009 Best Customer Care Operator
Zain Nigeria, at the weekend, won the prestigious Best Customer Care Operator of the Year in Nigeria, at the 2009 Nigeria Information Technology and Telecommunications Awards (NITTA) confirming its long and unbroken tradition of good Customer Service Excellence.
Last weekend’s award was the sixth of similar awards by the company in the industry in its 8th years of operations and the 3rd of such by NITTA.
The Awards Committee of the 8th edition of NITTA cited the company’s untiring commitment to delivering admirable customer care service, the launch of a new network monitoring centre, the expansion of its Call Centre facilities and the increase in number of Customer Service personnel in a move to respond faster and more efficiently to customers’ queries, among others, as reason for the award.
The award was received by the Chief Executive Officer of Zain Nigeria, Alain Sainte-Marie, who dedicated the award to the company’s customers for their loyalty to the brand and also to the Zain employees, who manage the company’s customer service operations at the Call Centres, Shops and other customer touch points.
He described the award as an endorsement of the public’s perception of Zain as the best in class operator when it comes to introducing customer centric products, technologies and other initiatives.
According to him, “Zain Nigeria and indeed Zain Group recognize the centrality of the customer to our existence and long-term business survival. Therefore, every investment and operational decision we make is ultimately focused on delighting our customers.
“We are in the business of providing telecommunications services, but we see our customers as more than just a mere connection. They are at the very heart and soul of our business. Though the name of this company has changed a few times over the years, our unwavering commitment to excellent customer service has never changed and will never change”.
Sainte-Marie added that Zain has invested massively in transmission capacity, network expansion, Call Centres and a fibre optic backbone just to ensure that our customers enjoy a wonderful telecommunications experience.
He specifically mentioned the establishment of an ultra-modern Call Centre in Abuja “which have significantly boosted the company’s capacity to respond to queries and ultimately delight our customers”.
“This Customer Care Award”, he stated, “means so much to us because it recognizes our unflinching commitment to our core values of Radiance, Heart and Belonging”.
Expressing delight and pride at the remarkable record of winning the award five times in eight years of the company’s operation, Sainte-Marie declared that “even as we celebrate another milestone in our history, I stand before you on behalf of my colleagues at Zain Nigeria to rededicate ourselves to commitment to continue to make our customers the focal point of our business in all our actions”.
Zain Nigeria has consistently topped the telecommunication industry’s customer service ranking since 2003, when the award was introduced.
Last year, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) placed its seal of approval on Zain’s outstanding rating by awarding it the Telecommunications Network with the Best Customer Service during the 5th Anniversary of the Consumer Parliament.
Zain Nigeria is the first Nigerian operator to offer toll-free 24-hour customer care line (111). It also parades extensive alternative channels through which its customers can lodge their queries and provide feedback including Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system equipped with features for five languages (Yoruba, Hausa, Ibo, Pidgin English, and the English Language) and self help attributes. Customer can also access support through Zain Nigeria’s chain of consumer contact points across the country including Zain Shops, email service, the super-interactive Zain website with a self-help customer care service link and an array of dealers outlets scattered across Nigeria’s six geo-political regions.
Fuel Subsidy Era Over – Tinubu
Newly sworn-in President, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has declared that the era of subsidy payment on fuel in Nigeria has ended.
This, he disclosed, is because the 2023 Budget made no provision for fuel subsidy and more so, subsidy payment is no longer justifiable.
“The fuel subsidy is gone”, Tinubu declared in his inaugural speech at the Eagle Square on Monday after he was sworn in as Nigeria’s 16th President.
Tinubu said his government shall instead channel funds into infrastructure and other areas to strengthen the economy, adding that a “unified exchange rate” is guaranteed under his administration.
He promised to remodel the economy to bring about growth and develop the Gross Domestic Product through job creation, saying that “the interest is currently too high and will be reviewed”.
The new President also assured investors that multiple taxation will be reviewed to attract investments, even as he promised one million jobs in the digital economy.
Tinubu, who also vowed to rid Nigeria of terrorism and criminality, said, “Security shall be top of our administration”, adding that he will “reform security architecture, invest more in security personnel, better training and provide better equipment for security personnel”.
The President said he “will end extreme poverty, make food more abundant, ensure inclusion for women and youths, and discourage corruption”.
Customs Holds Training For Maritime Journalists
The Nigeria Customs Service in conjunction with National Inland Waterways recently organised a two- day training workshop for members of the Association of Maritime journalists of Nigeria (AMJON) at the famous Administrative staff college of Nigeria (ASCON), Badagry, Lagos.
Comptroller General of customs, Col. Hammed Ali (rtd) in his key note address said from inception, one of the major cardinal programmes of the service has been effective and efficient mobilisation and sensitisation of members of the public in understanding the important statutory obligations vested on the service.
In order to achieve these objectives, he said, “it became imperative that we partner with our friends from the media to embark on educative and enlightenment programs.
“Having gone this far on our own, we are here today, under the able hands of the ‘owners of the profession’, to enrich, update and sharpen their skills in this direction for greater achievement of our collective objective”.
Speaking, the President of AMJON, Mr. Paul Ogbuokiri, emphasized the importance of the training programme, urging participants to avail themselves of the opportunity, which will translate into improved performance in their reportage.
On his part, the Managing Director, National Inland waterways Authority (NIWA), Chief George Moghalu, spoke on its new autonomy status and how it affects its national mandate.
Moghalu, who was represented by the Manager, Legal Services, Barr. Nasiru Biyankari, affirmed that NIWA offers a very critical role in the nation’s maritime industry through the execution of development in inland waterways of Nigeria and its regulations nationwide.
Also speaking, the National Coordinator, Port Standing Task Force Team (PSTT), Mr. Moses Fadipe, tasked AMJON members on accurate and objective reportage on PSTT’s operations to ensure that the public is well informed about the efforts of the team in tackling corruption at the ports.
“AMJON members are expected to adhere to ethical journalism standards and avoid sensationalism or biased reporting ,clear and informed reportage by Amjon members can contribute to building public trust in the PSTT and its efforts to improve transparency and efficiency in Port operations”.
The retreat had various renowned academicians as resource persons.
At the end of the two days training, with the theme, “Enhancing capacity/Efficiency in Modern News Reportage”, the participants were equipped with the knowledge and skills to perform their responsibilities as core maritime media practitioners.
Maritime: Stakeholders Set Agenda For Tinubu, Transport Minister
Stakeholders in the maritime sector have started coming up with measures for the newly sworn-in Federal Government under the leadership of Alhaji Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to revamp the maritime sector of the country.
The stakeholders are unanimous in saying that Nigeria as a maritime nation requires the services of a core professional, who will be courageous enough to implement some programmes that will practically empower indigenous operators in the shipping industry, while encouraging the entrance of new investors.
They said such measures include growing indeginious capacity through the full implementation of cabotage law, facilitating tonnage volume, and positioning of the maritime sector as a major contributor to federal revenue and national development.
According to the stakeholders, it is unfortunate that the maritime sector for years under different leadership derailed from its primary objectives, which is “to promote the development of indeginious commercial shipping in international and coastal trade”.
In his opinion, a maritime analyst and member of the Joint Ministerial Committee on International Maritime Organization (IMO)/Maritime Organization of West & Central Africa (MOWCA), Mallam Ismail Aniemu, said “there is the urgent need to unite the country because people have been more divided along ethnic, religious and lingual lines. This lack of unity fuels insecurity.
“Many parts of the country are unsafe, thereby creating the impression of ungoverned spaces. It’s time to improve on the security situation by not treating perpetrators of killings and other unlawful behavior as sacred cows. The laws of the land should be made to reign supreme on everybody”.
According to him, “Nigeria is overdue for a deliberate and sustained action towards economic diversification to achieve balance of trade, manufacture more for export, and creating job opportunities instead of distributing cash as handouts to the poor and vulnerable”.
On his part, the former President, National Association of Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), Chief Eugene Nwike, said, “I will advise the President and the incoming Minister of Transportation to appreciate and embrace the global doctrine, which defined ‘Trade’ as ‘an instrument of global peace’, hence, the need to evolve and support a holistic policy aimed at promoting trade facilitation”.
Nwike said the President must deliberately adopt the relevant tools required for its actualisation, while giving priority to removal of all forms of “Red Tapes and Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), including the undue prohibition of trade and closure of the border entry points.
“To this end, the immediate reversal of policy of categorised and uploaded certain regular trade items as non-beneficial to conventional foreign exchange assessment from the commercial banks excerpt for the parallel market (black markets).
“Secondly, undertake a drastic action against the foreign exchange market administration”.
Thirdly, siad, there’s the need “to give the maritime industry a priority, especially with the consideration to massive job creation, for which the industry has the capacity to remove our teeming youths off the unemployment market.
“And, for the incoming Transportation mitnister to pursue purposeful stakeholders engagements and embrace engagement by merits”.
A Maritime journalist, Odjegba Eguono, said the President “should appoint someone with productive and leadership capacity.
“Someone who should be an industry technocrat, and, if not, a fast learner with passion to grow the maritime and transport sector like the immediate past Minister, Jaji Sambo.
“The President and his Transportation Minister should prioritize urgent repairs and expansion of ports access roads, review terminal operators licenses, and decongest lagos ports”.
He stated that the new government should scrap the CRFFN, saying that the agency has proved unproductive and meaningless, being used as a drainpipe, contributing nothing to the system .
“The Minister should also scrap the NSDP by NIMADA and invest in MAN and NITT with the required wherewithal to carry out manpower development training.
“Finally, the incoming government should probe the NIMASA floating Dockyard and either dispose of it, or deploy it under an executive order”, Eguono said.
Stories By Nkpemenyie Mcdominic, Lagos
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