Published On: Mon, Nov 11th, 2019

FG extends deadline for data price reduction, illegal deductions

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By Etuka Sunday

Federal Government has graciously granted an extension of deadline to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for the downward cost review of data and to also halt illegal data deductions in the country.
The extension came following an appeal from the Commission to the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, to enable it properly re-strategise and fully implement long term solutions as directed.
Recall, the Minister, Dr. Isa Ibrahim Pantami on Tuesday, November 5, 2019 gave NCC five working days ultimatum to force the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) to review downward the price of data and stop illegal data deductions.
According to a statement signed by Mrs Uwa Suleiman, Spokesperson to the Communication Minister, the commission made this known on Saturday in a letter addressed to the minister.
NCC explained in the letter, that it had issued a directive to all Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) on the attendant penalties associated with Automatic Renewal and Forceful Subscription to Data and Value Added Services.
It listed the penalties as including considerable financial sanctions on the erring operator.
The letter stated that, “in response to the directive of the Honourable Minister, the Commission reviewed the Nigerian Communications Act of 2003 on its rule-making powers and process.
“The Commission is in the process of carrying out a study on the End-of-Session Notification for Data Services and depending on the outcome, may issue a direction in accordance with the Act.’’
NCC also notified the Pantami of its regulation of the initial directive to include refunds to the consumer in established cases of unauthorised subscription.
The commission assured the minister that it has been working assiduously round the clock to enforce the Federal Government’s directives.
It appealed for an extension of the deadline which expires today, 8th November 2019, to enable it properly re-strategise and fully implement long term solutions as directed, to the challenges.
Suleiman stated that the minister has graciously granted an extension with the understanding that the Commission will resolve the issues within the shortest time possible.
According to her, the minister, assured the general public that the current administration will neither tolerate acts of injustice nor the shortchanging of its citizens.
“This administration is working tirelessly to ensure that subscribers get full value for their money,’’ he said.

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