Stories by STAN OKENWA
Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has warned telecom operators in the country not to come to Telecoms Consumer Parliament (TCP) without documented evidence of reforms and actions taken by them to redress complaints raised by consumers.
Speaking at the 76th TCP held in Lagos recently, Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau of the NCC, Mrs. Maryam Bayi said that the commission is worried that upon a detailed programme of event sent to both the GSM and CDMA operators ahead of the meeting, all of them failed to come with their documentary presentations on what they have done, what they are doing and what they are about to do in addressing the shortfalls in subscribers experience of their services especially on data services.
She said “The importance of Data Service to global technological revolution and contribution to national economic and social development cannot be overemphasized.
“Data Services are able to eliminate redundancy and streamline costs. This is because critical data is housed in one location, enabling data to be accessed and/or updated by multiple users. while ensuring a single point of reference for updates.
“Sourcing from our Complaint Management Database, we have compiled the most prevalent consumer complaints on Data Service Delivery. These include:- Inability to Browse, Abnormal Depletion of Data, Unsuccessful Data Renewal and Unauthorized Service Renewal.
Bayi, therefore warned that any repeat of such deliberate negligence of given conditions to TCP will be viewed as contravention and treated as such because it will be very hard to verify claims made orally than documented presentations.
Daily Champion observed that all the speakers for the operators spoke without any slide but mere pieces of paper, claiming series of unverifiable efforts they said they are either making or have made to normalize data services on their networks.
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Dr. Eugene Juwah said the choice of this meeting’s theme ‘Data Service Delivery: The Way Forward’, he called on operators to fast track all efforts towards making data services affordable and effective considering the growing use of the services in every sector of the economy and even social life.
Juwah noted that “The world is now a global village and Nigeria cannot afford to be improperly integrated into it. This integration could be better achieved not only through voice telephony but also effective data service delivery.
“On consolidation of progress made so far, we have increased Teledensity from 63% in 2010 to more than 90% in 2014. The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, is targeting a 30 per cent increase in broadband internet penetration by 2018. The increase from its current level of six per cent is expected to come from the planned historic auction of the 2.6 gigahertz spectrum band.
He decried the low level of smartphone usage in Nigeria and linked the situation to apparent poor data services in terms of service downtime, data bundle renewal challenges, loss of data bundle before the expiration time and data connection delays.