Eugene Juwah

By Kokumo Goodie, Lagos, Nigeria

The regulator of Nigeria’s telecoms sector, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), says it has worked out key performance indicators (KPIs) with all the operators in the telecoms sector, warning that any breach of the KPIs will attract sanctions.

Meanwhile, the regulator has restated its commitment to rolling out the subscriber identity module (SIM) number portability (SNP) in the country before the end of the year, stressing that when implemented, it will give subscribers opportunity to choose among the various networks while still retaining their numbers.

Eugene Juwah, executive vice chairman and chief executive officer of the NCC, said the enforcement of the KPIs is aimed at ensuring that consumers derive the full benefit of the money they spend on buying recharge cards in the country while the SNP will deepen competition and allow subscribers to get the best tariff.

 “The Commission has worked hard to evolve a regulation on quality of service in the networks. Recently, network operators were penalised for the quality of services in their networks, which has not lived up to the prescriptions of this regulation. As we speak, the operators and the Commission have worked out sign posts, with Key Performance Indicators, KPIs, which the operators must meet over time to ensure a continuously improved quality of services,” Juwah disclosed, adding that these programmes are all aimed at sustaining consumer satisfaction in the use of their services in Nigeria.

He recalled that some operators were recently sanctioned over the service quality issues, assuring that customer protection will continue to be the capstone of the commission’s regulatory edifice.

On the SNP, Juwah assured: “Before the end of this year, the Commission will launch the Mobile Number Portability Programme which is designed to offer choice for the consumers. You may be aware that with MNP, the consumer would be allowed to retain his or her choice number, and still be allowed to obtain services from any of the mobile operator of choice. This scheme will not only deepen competition for the benefit of the consumer but will allow the subscriber the opportunity to get the best tariff and best quality among the operators. This is another win-win programme designed for the consumer.”

He also spoke about the NCC’s efforts at taking broadband to the nooks and crannies of the country at very affordable rates. According to him: “This programme is driven by the need to provide the Nigerian consumer with the best of services across the world. It will bring about new services and an array of many more operators, deepen competition and provide more choice for the consumer.”

As the nation approaches the end of the SIM card registration in the country, Juwah said the exercise was primarily designed to assist the security agencies in addressing the spate of crimes in the country. “We are now approaching the final stage of SIM Card registration in Nigeria. This programme to which the Commission is dedicated was primarily designed to assist security agencies in tackling crimes but it has a lot of spin off that address the needs of consumers in the networks, such as easy identification, easy retrieval of lines when phones are lost, use of phones to access mobile banking services among many other services,” the EVC said.

He said if all the activities, programmes, actions, regulations of the commission are closely looked at, it would be clear that they all revolve around the consumer.

“So, it is very obvious that the consumer, in the eyes of the regulator, is the king. The consumer occupies the central position in our scheme of things and comes top among all our stakeholders,” he said, adding that the NCC’s objectives are to continue to protect, inform and educate telecommunication consumers and provide policy formulation and strategic intervention for the industry."

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