The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has said that despite repeated awareness campaigns, many Nigerians are yet to appreciate and understand its regulatory role in enhancing quality, affordability and availability of telecoms services in the country.
Executive Vice Chairman, NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, who spoke at the second episode of the 2018 consumer conversation forum for South-East in Aba, Abia State, said several education and services embarked upon by the commission were to empower and protect the telecoms consumers.
Danbatta, represented by the Zonal Controller (South-East), Emilia Nwokoro, stated that various research and inquiries instituted by the commission indicated that Nigerians are still being short-changed by telecoms service providers, stressing that such was responsible for the introduction of consumer conversation forum aimed at enlightening on possible remedies to the situation.
He listed areas where Nigerians are being shortchanged to include, unauthorised deductions, sudden loss of credit/accurate billing, quality of service, data subscription/renewal as well as Sims swap and fraudulent withdrawals from subscribers’ bank accounts, among others.
He said to check the ugly trend, the commission had rolled out various services, directives as well as toll-free lines and codes to monitor service providers and for consumers to explore anytime they encountered such in the cause of using telecommunication services.
Besides, he said that to protect consumers from the menace of unsolicited text messages/calls, the commission had directed all mobile network operators to dedicate a short code 2442 to enable consumers make an informed decisions on what messages they wished to receive from service providers.
He said: “The 2442 Do Not Disturb short code is activated by consumers who wish to stop unsolicited text messages and voice calls. Sending STOP to 2442 would activate the full DND service that would prevent any unsolicited text messages, while sending HELP to 2442 would send a list of codes that would allow a customer make an informed choice of the category of message to receive.
“In furtherance of its efforts to promote competition, improve quality of service and ensure that consumers continue to enjoy good quality of service, the NCC launched the Mobile Number Portability (MNP) service for GSM subscribers in April 2013 to enable consumers switch networks without losing their unique phone numbers.”
He, therefore, charged Nigerians to make use of information provided by the commission to solve their telecommunication challenges.