Wednesday, December 16

NCC warns telecom operators

Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, ahead of the December 31, 2015 deadline, given to MTN Nigeria to pay a N780 billion fine for refusal to disconnect some 5.1 million improperly registered subscribers on its network, the regulator is also warning all the telecom operators to get their acts right because it is no longer going to be business as usual.

Director, Public Affairs of the commission, Mr Tony Ojobo, said that the operators should take the MTN fine as a warning against flagrantly disrespecting laid down rules and laws governing their operations in the country. He warned that the commission would not hesitate to come down hard on erring operators, not only to protect the operators themselves, but the subscribers and the operating environment as a whole.

“If you don’t create room for punishment,” said Ojobo, it can lead to impunity. So you have to apply the law to show that you are dispassionate, not biased, but following the rule of engagement.

According to him, “there is a signal now that it won’t be business as usual. We have received accolades worldwide and cannot now make a mess of ourselves back home. The way we manage this situation sends signals outside, on how we are operating our services here. If you don’t sanction, there are consequences.

“This sanction is good for us because it will instil discipline,   move our market forward, sanitise our operating environment, and also show that the regulators are alive to their responsibilities in the sense that we don’t have any preferences when our regulations are abused. What we have applied is a carrot and stick approach. The stick was the sanction, the carrot was the waiver of 25percent” he added.

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