Telkom double billing irks clients
WHEN Thireshni Sanasy put a R1000 cap on her Telkom account, she never expected the bill shock in excess of R2 000.
This month, though, she opened her latest statement and discovered that an amount was “brought forward” and she was suddenly more than R1000 in arrears.
“It cannot be,” she told me. “I’ve been double-debited for the month – I never exceed my usage and this account doesn’t make any sense.”
Her parents had the same issue, for months, she said. “They kept double-debiting my folks till eventually their service was cut.”
She told me wryly: “The automated message told me that someone will contact me within 72 hours but I was also informed my account would be suspended within 48 hours.”
So I asked Jacqui O’Sullivan, Telkom’s spokeswoman, about the double-debiting because the call centre now has an automated message stating it is aware of the issue and it is investigating.
O’Sullivan said: “It came to our attention on January 9, that some customers had been double billed for services for the month.
“First, we apologise to all our customers affected by this error.
“We are investigating how this came about, both with our banking partners and our billing vendors.
“The investigation will help us understand how this came to happen, as well as how many customers are affected, so we can put appropriate measures in place.
“Resolving this is an absolute priority and we will keep our customers informed of all developments. As we work to resolve this matter we have undertaken that no customer will be disconnected as a consequence of double billing.”
I asked how the system would be able to differentiate between double billing and arrears, and about claims on other sites that Telkom’s billing has been problematic.