The about 155 million active telephone subscribers in Nigeria have been urged to join hands with the communication industry regulators by being proactive in the fight against poor quality of telecommunications services rather than name callings and transferred aggression being exhibited on the social media.
Despite high communication tariff, Nigerians have continued to contend with very poor quality services from network operators characterised by incessant drop calls, uncompleted calls, undelivered messages and poor audio connections and more.
They even blame the industry regulators, the Federal Ministry of Communications and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for protecting rather than sanctioning them so they can improve their services.
The call for support was made in Abuja by the Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu, while reviewing the Ministry’s efforts at enhancing the quality of service by telecom service providers in the country.
The Minister stressed the need for all hands to be on deck to checkmate the unwholesome and obvious detestable conduct of operators in the area of poor quality service, which include unsolicited messages and outright extortion.
“The social media should be put to more productive use in such a way to project the country well in the comity of nations and proffer enduring solutions to tame the monstrosity of epileptic services by telecom operators,” he stated.
The minister, who acknowledged that Nigerians have the right to complain about unsavoury services they experienced in recent times from telecoms operators, however, assured that the ministry is not folding its hands or shying away from its responsibility of ensuring that normalcy prevailed in the industry.
He added that the Ministry always put regulatory agencies on their toes to do the needful according to a statement from the Ministry.
Rather than casting aspersions on the Ministry and the NCC for improper monitoring or not penalising telecom operators by infuriated Nigerians, he said people should understand the workings of government and in turn appreciate the efforts of the regulators in ensuring that consumers enjoyed value for their money.
For the records, as part of his commitment to ensure quality telecom service, the Minster on March 8, 2016, read a riot act at a meeting with top management staff of all telecom operators in the country.
Issues discussed included extortion of subscribers by telecom operators; incessant drop calls on all networks, poor quality of service, dead or silent calls and call tariff plans.
Others are deficiency in data penetration, roll out of 4G/LTE network, under-declared revenue and profit by operators, disengagement of Nigerian tax paying employees by operators through outsourcing to foreign companies and discrepancy and discrimination against Nigerian employees by service providers.
“In as much as I’m not holding brief for the telecoms regulatory agency, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), I know as a matter of fact many positive steps the Ministry in conjunction with the NCC have taken in the last one year to stem the tide of most of the subscribers’ complaints.”
He added that innuendoes to the effect that the Ministry and the NCC have been compromised, indolent and not capable of rescuing the Nigerian masses are far from the truth.