Chairman of The Association of Licensed Telecommunication Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) Mr. Gbenga Adebayo, said in Lagos that challenges in telecommunications should not be left for the operators alone.
He said that the operating environment was not conducive enough to maintain uninterrupted services.
Adebayo said the Federal and States Governments should synergize and come to their aid in solving the issues of multiple taxation and regulations affecting the growth of the industry.
Adebayo said that no business would thrive in an environment where resources that could have been used in network upgrading were diverted to the repairs of damaged telecommunications infrastructure in violence prone areas.
He said that the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) parameters set by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) do not reflect their performance and challenges of the industry.
According to him, poor services will persist as long as social problems such as wilful damage to telecommunications infrastructure and epileptic power supply are still lingering in the country.
“In countries where those parameters are set, power supply, security, and free access to sites are guaranteed with no interference from different government agencies.
“However, we are equally worried with the current state of poor services rendered to subscribers and we are ensuring that we continue to upgrade our networks”, he said.
Adebayo said that the fine imposed on them had not addressed the challenges they were facing which the regulator was aware of.
“For us, it is surprising that the regulator who is well aware of the issues and challenges that we are facing could go ahead to impose the huge fine on us.
“We think this is inappropriate and does not reflect the reality of the industry. Also, it is not good for the growth and development of the industry.
“It is bad for investors, bad for network operators and the side effects of this, if issues are not properly handled, can lead to a major problem in the industry,” Adebayo said.
He said that the fines imposed on them would not guarantee quality of service and even if the fines were finally paid; subscribers might bear the brunt.
According to him, the resources that would have been used to upgrade our networks to address the challenges and to build telecommunications infrastructure in those underserved areas would have been used to pay the fines.
“We must constantly remind ourselves that our networks have not been fully built and consolidated, hence, the issue of poor service will linger on as long as we are on the path that we are now,” he said.
Adebayo appealed to subscribers to bear with them as the industry was still growing to ensure it guaranteed value for money on calls and data services provided by them.