Posted by: Martin | January 3, 2012

Our current release schedule does not include the Ivory Coast

A typical release is planned many months in advance,  and regrettably, your planet is one of those scheduled for demolition

On the online banking website of the bank where Im a customer, you can send money to Burkina Faso, Togo and even to “US Minor Outlaying Islands” which according to Wikipedia have no permanent residents. However, you cannot send money to the Ivory Coast.

In March 2010 I asked them about it and got the following answer:

Apologies for the delay in coming back to you on your query. I have investigated this with our International Payments area and have been advised that currently there are EU and US sanction in place against Ivory Coast. Until such time as these sanctions are relaxed there will be no option to make a payment to this country using Internet Banking.

Since the sanctions are gone, but the Ivory Coast is still not on the drop down menu for international payments I emailed them last week and got the following response:

Dear Martin,

Thank you for your email. I acknowledge that currently the Internet Banking website does not offer the International Payment facility to the Ivory Coast.

I assure you that we endeavour to meet the needs of our customers and continually benchmark our product offering against our competitors. We operate a scheduled release system for updating Internet Banking. A typical release is planned many months in advance, unfortunately our current release schedule does not include the addition of the Ivory Coast for International Payments.

However, thank you for your feedback. We have taken note of  your suggestion and will submit it for inclusion in our future Release Plans.

Yup, that’s a lovely bureaucratic answer. My local bank is clearly not owned by Richard Branson, and  I can start seeing where Douglas Adams got inspiration for the Vogons in the Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy:

People of Earth, your attention, please. This is Prostetnic Vogon Jeltz of the Galactic Hyperspace Planning Council. As you will no doubt be aware, the plans for development of the outlying regions of the Galaxy require the building of a hyperspatial express route through your star system. And regrettably, your planet is one of those scheduled for demolition. The process will take slightly less than two of your Earth minutes. Thank you.

There’s no point in acting surprised about it. All the planning charts and demolition orders have been on display at your local planning department in Alpha Centauri for 50 of your Earth years, so you’ve had plenty of time to lodge any formal complaint and it’s far too late to start making a fuss about it now. … What do you mean you’ve never been to Alpha Centauri? Oh, for heaven’s sake, mankind, it’s only four light years away, you know. I’m sorry, but if you can’t be bothered to take an interest in local affairs, that’s your own lookout. Energize the demolition beams.


Responses

  1. Well, I have absolutely no problem. I bank with UBA (United Bank of Africa) and my account is at the Head Office in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire. Maybe your problem is that under international ISO Codes there is no such country as “Ivory Coast” … try asking them if they can transfer money to Cote d’Ivoire!!

    In the 12 years in business and domestic here, I have never had any difficulty in getting money to Cote d’Ivoire, but I suspect that it is only the stubborn (borne) people ho refuse to recignise International Conventions on the names accepted under UN, IATA, ISO, etc, that the is no such country as Ivory Coast (not Gold Coast or Upper Voltaire, or Dahomey, or the Slave Coast, nor … and I could go on.

    What really surprises me is that it is a tiny majority of very intelligent and erudite journalists, who in my opinion should know better, that hang on to the pre-independance, colonialistic, and surprisingly arrogant attitude that Cote d’Ivoire shoiuld be called Ivory coast … gentlemen, and ladies, you are SO WRONG. Just wake up, and bury the hatchet. Do not leave a sign that says “the hatchet is buried here” … that only shows that you do not mean it!

    Vivre Cote d’Ivoire (long live Cote d’Ivoire) … and the first one of you who openly admits that you are wrong, and publishes a full “apology” in one of the appropriate national papers. there is a bottle of champagne, and dinner, at my expense waiting you!!!!!

    But I don’t think I need o hld my breath! … Do I: MS; JJ; MC; MM; etc … you know who you are !!!!!

  2. Well, it works if I visit my bank’s branch offices, just not online.

    I actually did ask them about Ivory Coast (Cote d’Ivoire) just to make sure they knew what I was talking about. Anyway, I believe we’ve already had a long Ivory Coast vs Cote d’Ivoire debate.

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