Council cautions consumers on Gartile

05/02/2019 13:00

The Consumer Council of Fiji is extremely concerned at the cavalier attitude with which phone company Gartile continues to treat its consumers. 

Attempts by the Council to address the company’s constant disregard for consumer rights, have been to no avail with Gartile recording a total of 192 complaints in the past 5 years. 

The complaints include misplaced phones while in their possession for repairs, faulty or sub-standard products sold and misleading advertisements. 

It is disappointing to note that despite several notifications to Gartile and various mediations conducted at the Council, there has been no change in their unethical business practice. Consumers continue to get deceived by counterfeit mobile products. 
Currently, there are eight pending complaints with the Council. Recently a complainant gave his phone to Gartile for repairs and had paid $75.00 ($5.00 as diagnosis cost and $70.00 for repairs). During the collection of his phone from Gartile, he was further advised to pay $80.00 which he had initially denied but had later agreed to pay however, he was advised that the phone was lost. 

Gartile had advised the complainant to collect a replacement phone after he sought the Council’s intervention. Still, the complainant was advised to pay the additional $80.00 which is in breach of the arrangement made during the mediation facilitated by the Council.

The respondent had previously made excuses of improper internal company procedures where the submitted repair phone had been misplaced and consumers had been asked to fork out extra dollars to obtain a phone-in-box from the respondent terming it to be a replacement. 

This practice has been on-going and must stop. This notorious trader is succeeding as a growing business in Fiji at the prime expense of consumers, hence deserve no place in Fiji’s marketplace.  

The Council is cautioning consumers to steer clear of this trader due to his dubious record of unethical business practices. Any consumers who feel they have fallen prey to the unethical business practices of Gartile should contact the Council on the National Consumer Helpline toll free number 155.