By; JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON.
The Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) is committed to strengthening its regulatory function to ensure fair competition and sustainable growth of the telecoms market as well as exploring the huge opportunities that exist for private sector investment and growth for the market.
The Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) of the NCC, Professor Umar Garba Danbata stated this while speaking at the NCC Day at the on-going 38th Kaduna International Trade Fair.
EVC who was represented by Mr Ephraim Nwokenneya, Deputy Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau, NCC, said that the commission also supports public private partnership, which is the theme of this year’s fair.
“As some of you might be aware, the Nigerian Communications Commission is an agency of government with the statutory responsibility of facilitating the provision of good quality and affordable telecoms service in Nigeria. It is a fact that the telecoms revolution in the past 15 years has changed the way we live, work and play,” he said.
Speaking further, he said that the number of telecoms subscribers continue to grow exponentially with the sector contributing towards job creation and GDP growth in Nigeria.
“In 2015 alone, the telecom sector added 8.6% to national GDP compared to 8.9% in 2016. This is inspite of the current economic recession in the country.
“It goes without saying that the Commission supports the promotion of public private partnership as a strategy for accelerating growth and development hence our commitment and efforts in promoting active participation of all stakeholders in the industry.
“In NCC, we recognise the critical role of the consumer in what has become the success story of Nigeria’s telecoms sector. Hence, we regard the consumer as king in all our activities. We recognise that it is our responsibility as the regulator to see that the industry satisfies the needs of this class of stakeholders and that the consumer remains protected at all times,” he pointed out.
The EVC stressed that consistent with their eight point agenda and as a consumer centric organisation, the Commission has declared 2017 as a special year for the Nigerian telecoms consumer.
“This programme is geared towards celebrating and empowering the Nigerian Telecom Consumer.
“In the next few months, we hope to unveil detailed plan of action that will give concrete expression to our declaration of 2017 as the year of the consumer.
“In the past few years, the Commission has made it a point of duty to attend almost all international trade fairs in the country because we believe that trade fairs provide opportunity for us to meet face to face with our most valued consumers,” he said.
The NCC boss urged all to take advantage of some of the Commission’s initiatives that have been put in place to ensure best in class consumer satisfaction index in the industry.
“These include the toll free line 622 provided for lodging of complaints (if any) on the services provided by mobile network operators in the country.
“You can also activate the Do-Not-Disturb service on your mobile lines. The Do-Not-Disturb service provides you an opportunity to opt-out of unsolicited messages/calls or choose the kind of messages you would wish to receive”.