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PUBLISHED : Monday, 02 May, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 02 May, 2005, 12:00am


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The column for anyone fed up with bureaucracy, frustrated with delays or furious with poor service. Tell us your complaint and we'll try to fix it...

Reader Tsui Kuen said his i-Cable broadband connection had been disrupted for more than a month, yet he had trouble finding anyone from the company to help him fix the problem.

'I am their subscriber and I have not been able to use their internet connection for over a month. I tried to contact i-Cable's customer service department, but it took me at least 20 to 30 minutes each time to get through.

'My internet service is constantly disconnected, and the speed of download and upload is unacceptable - it takes me five to 10 minutes to open a webpage.'

Mr Tsui said he eventually managed to talk to a supervisor in late March, who agreed to send a technician to check on his computer. 'But the problem was not solved. The technician told me that he would pass on the case to a company engineer to check what the problem was.

'Two days later, I tried to contact i-Cable customer service again, and I had to go through the same long wait and repeated explanation to their staff.

'Another supervisor picked up my complaint. He couldn't tell me when the problem would be fixed and normal service resumed. I-Cable staff just wasted my time - they are not willing to solve the problem.

'I have even suggested a reasonable solution: that they let me temporarily use a different internet service provider until they fix my problem, but they just rejected my proposal.'

I-Cable apologised to Mr Tsui following a Take Action inquiry but said the connection problem was caused by signal interference from another commercial network inside Mr Tsui's building.

A company spokesman said: 'We wish to apologise to the reader for disruption to his broadband service, which we suspect is caused by signal interference ... A joint inspection has since been conducted and the problem has been identified as not caused by our network.

'We are awaiting the operator of the other network to solve the problem. We have and shall continue to keep the reader informed on progress.'

A reader wrote to complain about Dah Chong Hong (DCH), Honda's local agent and distributor, for failing to thoroughly check his vehicle and then make him wait for weeks for a replacement part that it said even Honda in Japan did not carry.

'In February 2005, I bought a secondhand Honda CR-V. It was first registered on May 15, 2000, but is still covered by an extended warranty, valid until May 18, 2005,' he wrote.

'After driving it for about one month, I noticed that the gear-changing was becoming erratic and the engine warning light would sometimes go on and stay on for a while.

'I suspected that my car's problem might also be related to the on-board computer.

'On March 8, I took the car to DCH in Kowloon Bay for servicing.'

After about three days, the centre called him to say that the throttle valve body was distorted and would need to be replaced. However, DCH did not carry spares for this part in Hong Kong and it had to be ordered from Honda in Japan.

He was told it might take two to three weeks to arrive. In the meantime, he could continue to drive the car.

Towards the end of the third week, the car started to perform erratically again. At the end of March, the spares arrived.

But when the reader went to retrieve the car after it had been repaired, the mechanic found that the on-board computer was in fact faulty and another replacement part would be required. Again, this had to be ordered from Japan.

After a few days, he was told the part was not in stock, even in Japan, and had to be 'back ordered' from the original manufacturer, whatever this meant.

'I suspect that DCH has been less than frank with me, as I find it very hard to believe that even Honda in Japan does not have spares on hand for a current-model car,' he said.

'Because of the failure to detect the computer fault at the outset, I drove my car for some three weeks in a potentially dangerous condition. It also seems strange that spare parts for current models are not kept by the Hong Kong agent.'

DCH's service department did not reply to messages left by Take Action, but the reader said that shortly after our inquiry, he was told the missing spare part was now available.

'This is to update you. On the morning of April 19, I received a call from DCH to say that the spare part would be arriving the same afternoon, and that all haste would be made to complete the service as quickly as possible.

'The replacement itself should be fairly quick, but some post-installation testing will be necessary.

'It therefore seems that my car might be available finally.'