In continuation of its commitment to enlighten consumers of telecom services, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has taken its consumer enlightenment programme to communities in Nasarawa State to sensitise them about their rights, obligations, and privileges.
Also, the engagement was organised to enlighten telecom consumers on consumer-centric initiatives put in place by the Commission, which consumers can leverage to improve their telecom usage experience.
Speaking at the event, which took place in Keffi, Nassarawa State, the NCC’s Director, Zonal Operations, Amina Shehu, said the engagement was in line with NCC’s mandate to constantly educate the consumers on telecom service-related issues bordering on improving their quality of service experience.
Addressing the participants on behalf of Shehu, an Assistant Director in the department, Usman Abubakar, said the Commission had developed a series of engagement programmes to keep telecom consumers informed of developments in the telecoms sector towards protecting consumers from any unwholesome practices.
Participants in the sensitization programme were enlightened on many subjects including Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) registration, consumer complaints redress process arising from illegal deductions, illegal sales of improperly-registered cards, among others.
According to Abubakar, the Commission had recently directed all subscribers to ensure the integration of their SIMs with their National Identification Numbers (NIN), otherwise, their mobile lines will be blocked.
“As a rule in Nigerian telecommunication industry today, every mobile subscriber must register his/her SIM before activation, as there are penalties associated with the sale and purchase of fraudulently-registered SIM cards. We also enjoin you, as telecom consumers, not to allow another person to use their NIN to register other people’s SIMs,” he said.
On the issue of complaints’ redress, Abubakar told the consumers that it is their right to be satisfactorily attended to by their service providers to resolve any service-related complaints they may have. He, however, noted that where such complaint was not satisfactorily resolved by their mobile network operator (MNOs), consumers should take advantage of the NCC toll-free number 622, by dialing the number to report such a case for necessary escalation and resolution.
Abubakar also stated that another consumer-centric initiative of the Commission is the Do-Not-Disturb (DND) 2442 short code, which consumers can use to manage cases of unsolicited messages on their mobile phones. “Millions of telecom consumers have leveraged this short code to stop or manage cases of spam text messages on their mobile devices and we enjoin you to also take advantage of it,” he added.
During the event, a number of consumer complaints were addressed by the NCC team by getting the right information from the Commission while some of the consumers were advised to contact their service providers to resolve some specific service-related issues.
Some of the issues include the automatic migration of a consumer from an existing data plan to another data plan without the consumer’s consent, as well as illegal airtime or data deductions.