The Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Danbatta, has called on the three tiers of government to adhere to the National Economic Council (NEC) Resolution on the right of way, which stipulates taxes to be charged telecommunication operators in the country.
Minister of Communication Technology, Adebayo Shittu, has called on the commission to urgently address the high rate of drop calls and unsolicited messages by telecom operators.
Danbatta lamented that telecom operators are subjected to indiscriminate regime of taxes, adding that getting approvals for right of way, especially from states and local governments, is a major challenge.
“You find states, local and federal governments charging different extremely high rates, and in some instances you find even area boys forcefully subjecting operators to pay. This is a menace. My appeal is that the Minister of Communication should work hand in hand with the commission, to ensure adherence to the provision of NEC on right of way.”
He said the commission has been directing operators to ensure compliance with standards, not only on drop calls, but also other parameters. He added that the issue of drop calls and unsolicited messages is an important regulatory responsibility the commission is tackling.
“On unsolicited text messages, one important regulatory measure we have already put in place is that henceforth, from July 20, all text messages must have a ‘Do Not Disturb’ provision and consumers can opt into this. This is going to apply to all consumers. If this is not adhered to, there will be consequences. The fine is about N10m for non-adherence.”
Responding, the minister told the NCC boss that Nigerians are complaining about the huge number of unsolicited messages and calls they are bombarded with daily.