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Telecoms operators kick against suspension of data tariff hike

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Telecommunications operators in the country, have kicked against the suspension of the new data tariff floor , which the Nigerian Telecommunications Commission (NCC) approved recently.

The NCC had announced suspension of the initial directive it gave to operators, after public outrage from consumers and stakeholders. The Senate also asked the regulating body to stop the planned increase.

In a reaction to the new development, the Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), expressed its dissatisfaction in a statement released by its chairman, Mr. Gbenga Adebayor.

According to the statement: “ALTON notes that price changes for data services across all networks following any intervention by the NCC were not expected to have a detrimental effect on broadband penetration, contrary to some sentiments being expressed in the media.

“ALTON wishes to emphasise that while it is imperative that telecommunications operators continue to explore opportunities to provide their subscribers with more value for their money, it is important that prices are set at realistic levels which ensure that subscribers are not only able to afford services but operators are also in a position to provide first rate services to their subscribers.

“While we fully understand the public sentiments that would appear to have greeted the announcement of the new minimum data tariff introduced by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), ALTON wishes to state that NCC intervened to set the data tariff floor in exercise of its statutory responsibility to promote healthy competition by periodically reviewing voice and data tariffs in the industry and ensuring the sustainability of the Nigerian telecommunications industry.

“It is noteworthy to mention that the NCC commenced extensive consultation with the industry prior to the finalisation of the data tariff floor, but the commission has since Wednesday suspended the implementation of its determination on the data tariff floor.

“In this regard, our members await the conclusion of NCC’s market study when the commission will be in a position to determine its requisite intervention.”

 

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