Senate goes after telcos over dropped calls

July 13, 2019
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The Senate have advised regulatory agencies in Nigeria to ensure strict supervision of telecoms service providers for effective service delivery.

This followed the adoption of a motion by Sen. Buhari Abdulfatai (APC-Oyo) and 34 others on increasing rate of drop calls and other unwholesome practices by telecoms operators at plenary in Abuja.

The senate in its resolution expressed reservation over inefficient service delivery by GSM network providers in the country.

It urged regulatory agencies to invoke appropriate provisions of the law to protect consumers where necessary and ask for refund them for disrupted calls caused by bad network.

The Senate also urged them to carry out through investigation on causes of drop calls and come up with innovations that would help improve customers’ experience.

It also directed its committees on communications and trade, when constituted to further look into issues raised in the motion. Speaking on the motion, Abdulfatai said Nigerians are experiencing a disturbing and yet increasing rate of dropped calls.

He said telecoms customers are encountering in-comprehensive speech and voice quality that is unclear during phone conversations.

He said subscribers do not have the power to control bundle usage, nor have choice to restrict browsing to the resources which they were allocated resulting in sudden and unexplained expiry of data bundle.

He said GSM operators in Nigeria had recently been experiencing terrible congestion on their networks, thus denying subscribers benefit of getting value for their resources.

He said in spite of warnings by Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) on the unpleasant activities of drop calls, meant to defraud Nigerians, no serious sanctions had been taken against any operator.

He said no effort had been made to enhance the experience of telecoms customers. He said investigations indicate that four major operators -MTN, Airtel, Etislat and Globacom could not provide the rate of drop calls on their networks. This, he said showed that they are not ready to compensate customers for disconnected calls.

President of the Senate, Dr Ahmad Lawan in his final submission said the 9th senate would do everything to protect Nigerians against exploitation by telecoms service providers.

He said the senate would not only bark but bite this time around. According to him, the senate will conduct a public hearing on the matter where the regulator- NCC and the telecoms operators will be invited.

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