NCC Orders Telecoms To Conduct Billing Audit As Customers Complain Of Data Depletion

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The Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) says mobile network operators (MNOs) have been directed to audit their billing systems.

NCC said the directive was issued to address consumer complaints about data depletion.

The commission made this known in a statement on Friday.

“Quality of experience takes into account all touch points along the consumers’ journey in using telecom services from selection, through onboarding, usage, support and even off-boarding,” NCC said.

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“This means that consumers are empowered to make the right network selection, enjoy a seamless onboarding into the network of their choice, enjoy quality service at fair costs, receive responsive customer service and enjoy protected off-boarding where they choose to leave the network.

“To address consumer complaints on data depletion, the commission has directed mobile network operators (MNOs) to conduct an independent audit of their billing systems and is concluding a consultation process to simplify tariff plans.

“These initiatives would provide enhanced transparency to the consumer.”

NCC TO TACKLE INDUSTRY DEBT, MULTIPLE TAXATION ISSUES

NCC said it is committed to tackling industry debt issues more seriously.

The commission said it has also embarked on critical advocacy initiatives to address long-term challenges in the sector, “including advocacy for designating telecom infrastructure as critical national infrastructure, as well as successfully persuading over six states to waive right of way (RoW) fees, even as he initiates discussions with more states”.

NCC said engagement is ongoing with the presidential committee on fiscal policy and tax reforms towards addressing multiple taxation issues in the telecoms sector.

Maida said to ensure that the industry is in line with current realities, the commission is also undertaking a review of its extant regulatory instruments and licensing frameworks.

TIJANI SETS TARGET TO IMPROVE QUALITY OF SERVICE

NCC said Bosun Tijani, minister of communications, innovation, and digital economy, has set a target to improve the quality of service between 2023 and 2027.

The commission said a 50 percent improvement in the quality of services (QoS) has been set for the end of 2024.

“Acknowledging the criticality of resilient telecommunications infrastructure to a robust digital economy, Dr. Tijani’s Strategic Agenda 2023 — 2027 sets targets to achieve a 50 per cent improvement in Quality of Service (QoS) by the end of 2024,” NCC said.

The regulator said the target includes boosting Nigeria’s broadband penetration rate to 70 percent by the end of 2025 and “delivering data download speed of 25Mbps in urban areas and 10Mbps in rural areas by the end of 2025”.

NCC said it is also working to provide coverage for, at least, 80 percent of the country’s population, especially the underserved and unserved populations by the end of 2026 and “to reduce the gap of unconnected Nigerians in rural areas from 61 per cent to less than 20 per cent by 2027; and to secure between 300 per cent to 500 per cent increase in broadband investment by the end of 2027”.

The commission said three strategic focus areas have been put in place by the commission; the areas of consumers, industry and licensees; and the government.

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