NCC to foster growth with focus on collaboration, service quality – Maida

“We are also going to see how we can improve the general security and  integrity from the consumers’ perspective.

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NCC to foster growth with focus on collaboration, service quality - Maida
Dr Aminu Maida, the Executive Chairman, Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC)

Dr Aminu Maida, the Executive Chairman, Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC), says the commission will foster growth in the telecoms industry by focusing on collaboration, compliance, data and quality of experience.

Aminu said this during a special engagement with the media in Lagos on Thursday to discuss his vision and strategy after spending 100 days in office.

He said it was very vital to collaborate with stakeholders, who ranged from government agencies to the media, telecoms operators and consumers.

Maida said the commission would focus more on being data centric, as the world was in a digital age.

He noted that as a regulator of the telecoms industry, it was necessary to leverage data to make informed decisions.

“We will be driving the collection of a lot of data from our stakeholders to project the work that we are doing, so that we can have a high level of transparency and accountability.

“Compliance is another driver we need to focus on, as a regulator that is  empowered by the Nigerian Communications Act (NCA) 2003, we have the power to hold our licensees to their obligations.

 “We have laid down obligations for our licensees to meet and we will ensure they uphold those obligations.

“Of course, this will require more work on the part of the regulator, so we will be deploying digitalisation, to enable us work efficiently.

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“For instance, renewing of licenses can be done digitally,” Maida said.

On stakeholders, the NCC boss said that the commission would be focusing on three major stakeholders – the telecoms consumers, the industry itself and the government.

Maida noted that the commission would be focusing on the needs of each of these stakeholders, adding that it knew consumers, for example, are looking for total Quality of Experience (QoE).

The NCC boss said the commission would  be driving QoE, right from the point of how they find and select telecoms services.

“We will be leveraging on data to be able to empower consumers to make the right choice, so that we can move away from the world where we have multiple SIM devices.

“Rather than multiple devices and SIM cards, we are looking at a situation, where consumers will only have one SIM card and one device.

“We are also going to be working with our licensees on data tariff, speed and coverage. We are going to be working with our licensees to see how tariff can be simpler and more transparent,” Maida said.

He added that the commission would also continue to enlighten consumers to understand the habits that drive greater data usage.

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BRANDPOWER reports that Maida explained that as consumers buy phones with stronger data tolerance which produce better quality pictures, they fail to realise that these habits consume data faster.

He noted that the commission would be stepping in, as a regulator, to see the common issues that consumers are complaining about and how to resolve such problems.

“We are also going to see how we can improve the general security and  integrity from the consumers’ perspective.

“The commission plans to create a platform where consumers can verify whether lines they have not used for a long time is still active or not.

“We have noticed that vicious people are targeting lines that are dormant for a long time to carry out fraud.

“Also, we want to formulate a policy to ensure that any line used to carry out fraud, the owner of that line will be prosecuted. So, if you are not using a particular line, it is advisable you block it,” Maida said.

On its licensees, he said the commission was looking at reviewing the operating standards and introducing better ones which would be more in line with international best practices and also in the area of corporate governance.

He said NCC would be leveraging technology to review regulatory services and internal processes to improve their operations.

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“We are going to be doing a lot of advocacy in the areas of pushing the telecoms industry as a critical national infrastructure.

“On the right of way charges, we are working with states government to either waive the RoW charges or stick to the N145/linear charge. We are also engaging states on the issue of multiple taxation,” he said.

Maida said that the commission would also be aligning its goals with that of the minister’s blueprint.

He said that NCC’s policy was to grow the industry by increasing its  contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

“NCC is also focusing on job creation, especially for our youth, and facilitation of cross industries collaboration. We are going to enable other industries to innovate and grow,” he said.