Some days ago, I was shocked to read online that the Nigerian Communications Commission had mandated all Telecoms to review their data prices starting from December 1st. Now these Telcos have no choice but to follow any directive given them by NCC.
However, there is urgent need now to examine NCC and its role so far in the Telecommunications sector in Nigeria. NCC describes itself as â€œthe independent National Regulatory Authority for the telecommunications industry in Nigeria. The Commission is responsible for creating an enabling environment for competition among operators in the industry as well as ensuring the provision of qualitative and efficient telecommunications services throughout the country.â€
Funny though how they appear to be adept at stifling the growth of the telecommunications sector in Nigeria. These past couple of years has seen strange decision taken by supposed â€œexpertsâ€ who have ensured that the customer pays more than what he should for services.
Letâ€™s start with their directive some 3 years back, 2013 to be precise when they stated that no Telco (specifically MTN)Â should charge below 10kobo per second for each calls. 3 years later, no calls have been charged less than 10kobo.
Fast forward to 2016, data prices crashed due to Glo introducing cheaper data plans and the whole country was better off for it, now imagine the incredulously NCC introducing a new data tariff that would see subscribers on all the Telcos pay much higher than obtainable. Its just mind boggling and disgusting.
Makes you wonder who sits down and makes these rules that do not favor the consumer. The consumer is always the King and has a right to make a choice and does not need the â€œregulatorâ€ hiking price just to suit their nefarious purposes.
Have the so called regulators bothered to find out how their â€œpolicyâ€ affects the economy? Letâ€™s start with Technology. Mark Zuckerberg paid a visit to Nigeria, and the first place he visited was CC Hub, showing you that one of the richest men on earth values and understands the importance of technology. Now there are up and coming web and app developers who were relieved to see data prices come down as they got to have more access to important resource they need which can only be found on the internet which the NCC now figures should not be so.
Bloggers who rely mostly on Adsense will now find it harder as their cost of running the blog shoots up, not to mention electricity price hike, fuel price hike. I mean seems to me that NCC never thought this through.
Now to the most important, Social Media users. Already conspiracy theories are flying around that the government of the day is looking to stifle criticism. This move by the regulator will see increased outrage against it and the government. Of course increasing data plans will of course reduce usage, which translates to lesser patronage for the Telcos.
So who stands to gain? Free basics is one subtle gainer. There are other gainers like the The FG, “small telcos” and of course NCC who will find it easy fining any telco found guilty of “not complying”. However we would surely know when new data prices come into effect on December 1st.
What we could do is not sign a petition, not occupy, no , those methods donâ€™t work in this country. We need to teach the regulator and the regulated a lesson. We need to boycott their services. Of course most of us won’t want to go so extreme but we need to be assertive, and let them know that the end user of the services is the consumer who ultimately pays from his pocket. A boycott is the answer, they will certainly listen to that.
[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://megasblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Guy_fawkes_mask.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Qui Si Convien Lasciare Ogni Sospetto
Ogni VittaÂ´ Convien Che Qui Sia Morta
Here Must All Distrust Be Left
All Cowardice Must Here Be Dead[/author_info] [/author]