By; PATRICK TITUS, Uyo
The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has said that it has developed series of initiatives aimed at empowering telecommunication consumers with appropriate information against unwholesome practices of service providers.
NCC Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau, Mr. Abdullahi Maikano, said this in his opening remarks at the Commission’s 92nd edition of Consumer Outreach Programme (COP) in Ikot Ekpene, Akwa Ibom State.
Maikano said the initiatives will ensure that customers’ rights are not only protected but they also get value for the money with the choices provided to them.
According to Maikano, consumer education is identified by NCC as one of the most cost effective mechanism which provides and guarantees consumer protection.
“Besides serving as a proactive way of protecting consumers from making wrong choices, it also serves as a preventive measure that protects consumers from being exploited and against fraud,” he added.
The Director who was represented by his deputy, Alhaji Ismail Adedigba, explained that the outreach programme sought to educate consumers and other stakeholders on contemporary issues generating interest in the telecom industry.
The forum also served as a feedback mechanism for NCC in making regulatory intervention for the benefit of both consumers and service providers.
“Besides serving as a proactive way of protecting consumers from making wrong choices, it also serves as a preventive measure that protects consumers from being exploited and against fraud.
The Director urged participants to take advantage of the forum to be well informed so that service providers do not take undue advantage of them.
Earlier in his welcome address, the deputy Director Consumer Affairs Bureau, Alhaji Ismail Adedigba said the Commission considered the consumer as a critical stakeholder in the telecoms industries, stressing that it would not relent in ensuring that their rights are protected.
Allaying fears in some quarters concerning NCC, he said the Commission is not in any way winding down on its avowed commitment to serve the consumer better in all fronts.
According to him, the theme, “Information and Education as a Catalyst for Consumer Protection”, is to educate consumers to stand up for their right.
He appealed to all stakeholders to be responsive of all the complaints raised by the consumers, just as the participants should spread the messages and issues discussed to others who were not able to attend the programme.
Speaking on the theme, Information & Education as a Catalyst for Consumer Protection, the Head of Government & Legislative Department of the Commission, Mr. Onatimi Spiff said NCC will continue to make policies to improve on the quality of services enjoyed by consumers