Senate orders NCC to sanction erring service providers

The Chairman of Senate Committee on Communications, Senator Gilbert Nnaji has asked the Nigerian Communications Commission to tighten up by making sure that network service providers in the country provide quality services to Nigerians in order to get value for their money.

Speaking at a budget defence interactive session between the Committee and the Nigerian Communications Commission and it’s allied agencies, Nnaji expressed that NCC as a regulatory agency in telecommunication sector were expected to bark and bite in order to effectively address corporate rascals in the sector.

“This Committee calls on NCC to tighten it’s belt in the discharge of its regulatory functions. We look forward to seeing a regulator that can bark and bite effectively; that would frontally stem any form of rascality and impunity in the telecommunications sector,” he noted.

He called for investigation into the nagging issues of poor quality of service providers where subscribers have been experiencing call drops, unsolicited messages, calls, unregistered SIM, proliferation of substandard phones and the likes.

“As a matter of urgency, the Commission should look into the nagging issues of poor quality of service manifesting in call drops, unsolicited text messages, call jams as well as unregistered SIM cards,” Nnaji maintained.

Nnaji wondered on the widening digital gap between the rural and urban communities, saying the Senate was aware of the number of projects meant to address these issues. He maintained that the Committee was not sure of sufficient deployment of those projects.

He added that the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) was doing robustly to bringing government and its services closer to the people through IT infrastructure, which he said would make the nation an IT based in the near future.

“We have realized the robust roles being played by NITDA in seeking to bring government and its services closer to the people through IT, thereby making Nigeria a capable country in no distant future,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Honourable Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu has commended the National Assembly for their commitment at ensuring that Telecommunications sector in Nigeria was alive to its responsibilities which he said manifested in the legal instruments the lawmakers have put in place.

“The National Assembly has done well with statutory laws that were enacted which made it possible for robust operations of telecommunications industry and I must commend them for that,” the Minister said.

He also stated that service providers in Nigeria were aware that they were being monitored by appropriate regulatory agencies, hence it was no longer business as usual.