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Samsung, Nokia to recycle fake phones after switch-off

Leading handset manufacturers, Nokia and Samsung, have separately set up collection points for counterfeit handsets ahead of the planned switch-off by the Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) on 30th September 2012.

Samsung Electronics is offering reprieve to all subscribers through a mop up campaign dubbed: Give up the Fake! that kicks off today. In the unique mop up campaign, Samsung is reaching out to subscribers to turn in their counterfeit handsets and in return get genuine Samsung mobile handsets with prices starting as low as  Kshs 1,399  and with  a two year warranty.

Speaking during the launch of the campaign, Samsung Electronics East Africa Business Leader Robert Ngeru confirmed that the firm’s sales promotion is geared to support the on-going CCK ‘pata ukweli wa mtambo’ campaign.

In rolling out the Samsung Give up the Fake! Campaign, the firm has partnered with Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Centre Limited (WEEE Centre) a local E-Waste recycling company, to manage the collection and ultimately the safe disposal of all counterfeit handsets.

The campaign will simultaneously roll out in 6 major towns; Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret, Nakuru and Thika, with respective municipal town halls acting as the collection centres.

Nokia has set up several collection points at its customer care centres, and has partnered with Safaricom, Airtel, Nakumatt, Naivas, Phonelink, and Tuskys to ensure an additional 100 collection points are set up across the country, making it easier for consumers to dispose of fake phones.

Concern had been rising over the disposal of the nearly 3 million counterfeit phones that are in use after CCK’s clamp down and the move by the two manufacturers should put to rest the issue raised by Kenyan NGO’s, environmental agencies and consumers.

“Consumers in Kenya, like in many countries across the globe, are unaware of the environmental benefits of recycling their broken or unwanted mobile phones,”says Bruce Howe, General Manager for Nokia East Africa.

“The reality is that mobile phones contain many valuable and useful materials that can be recycled, including precious metals and plastics. In fact, for every one million phones recycled, it is possible to recover nearly 35kg of gold and 350kg of silver, which can be re-used in the production of future electronic goods.”

Nokia runs the largest mobile phone recycling program in the world, with over 6,000 collection points in about 100 countries. The company’s recycling program generates no revenue for the company, but is an important part of its overall sustainability initiatives. As part of this program Nokia collects and recycles handsets and mobile phone accessories, including counterfeit ones and those of other manufacturers.

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