Operators Angry, Nigerians Happy over NCC Fines on Telecoms

JUWAH-NCC-BOSS

Juwah, NCC Boss

ARGUMENTS are swing left and right over the bark and bite strategy of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) which has resulted in a total fine of N1.0124trillion on telecom operators under the leadership of Prof. Umaru Danbatta.

While telecom operators are angry with the fines, a cross section of Nigerians commended the apex regulator for fining and enforcing the sanctions against some recalcitrant service providers which have refused to improve their service provisioning or failed to register SIM cards on their network.

The mixed reactions is coming on the heels of the recent N1.04 trillion fine against MTN Nigeria over alleged breach of SIM registration rules.

Engr. Lanre Ajayi, president, Association Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) said that this round of fines is not appropriate.

“In as much as I believe that fines are good deterrent tool for operators it should be carefully applied and not in the manner that it could make potential investors in the information and communications technology sector of the country’s economy runaway,” he said.

He added that fines should be proportionate to the offence and not to make it look like a joke.

”NCC should weigh the implication of such fines on investment in the sector before issuing it out to operators in order not to create the impression that Nigeria is not an investment friendly country,” he noted.

Nodding in agreement, Engr. Gbenga Adebayo, chairman, Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) said that he has severally made it clear that NCC should stop oppressing telcos through imposition of fines as there are other corrective mechanism that could be used on operators.

“Since last administration at NCC introduced fines as sanction on operators for poor quality of service it has not solved the issue of quality of service rather they should take responsibility,” he stated.

Also commenting, Deolu Ogunbanjo, president, National Association of Telecommunications Subscribers of Nigeria (NATCOMMS) said that the latest fine is outrageous and condemnable which will not encourage foreign direct investment into the country.

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4 Comments
  • John650

    Don’t kill the goose that lays the golden egg. How much does MTN make in Nigeria to pay a $5.2bn fine? If that company exits Nigeria, we are going to be at a huge loss in services it provides, taxes it pays to our government and employment it provides to our people.

    While I support some form of penalties and corrective action, this latest episode sounds like a joke and makes the NCC seem like they don’t have a grasp of what they are doing.

    • Nwaolis Chikaodili J

      If fine is a deterant; then it should be commensurate with the offence committed. MTN, has not served Nigeria well though but we should be reasonable when we slam some kind of sanctions so we don’t make it look ridiculous at the end

    • emmanuel kalu

      don’t let them use that argument to dodge the fine. what about the other providers that compiled with the rule? they would not leave, Nigeria is their biggest market and they know it. regardless of how much they make, a fine should be huge enough to ensure that the company would not do it again or loss so much money. in America, the regulator fined the banks billions of dollar for the housing crisis, however the bank made billions more, one player made 50 billion alone. yet regulator fined them a billion or so, those banks just consider that cost of business.

  • emmanuel kalu

    PURE RUBBISH. This kind of huge fine is a very good weapon to keep corporation in line. all the other companies would straighten up. too many time, corporation break the law, and get a small amount of fine, which they can just account for as cost of operation. regulators need to fine corporation with this kind of huge fines, fines that would make the company think twice next time, that financially affect their financial statement and their stock price. GOOD job NCC. if other regulator especially NERC could follow your lead.

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