Nigeria’s Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu, has called on Nigerians to adopt made in Nigeria software, saying effort must be made to protect local industries and local software developers.
Speaking at the flag-off of the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC), 2017 Year of the Telecom Consumer, on Wednesday in Abuja, which coincided with the World Consumer Rights Day (WCRD) celebration, Shittu said, “It’s therefore apt for the NCC to flag off and declare 2017 the year of the Nigerian Telecom Consumer since the theme of the 2017 WCRD celebration falls within the purview of the NCC regulatory activities and oversight function on the Telecom Industry.
“World Consumer Rights Day is an opportunity to promote the basic right of all consumers, demanding that those rights are respected and protected, and a chance to protest against the market abuses and social injustice which undermine those rights.”
He added that the ministry was working on formulating cogent policies, frameworks and guidelines on protecting ICT consumers especially in telecommunications.
“The major issues of telecom consumers include drop calls on the rise due to customer base management; delay in hooking up calls due to congestion arising from possible obsolete equipment and maintenance; power interruption; Network coverage issues and enforcement challenges. Our goal is to find balance between consumer rights and right to privacy,” he said.
Professor Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman, NCC, said the 2017 Year of Telecom consumer, NCC was to inform and educate the consumer with the sole intent of protecting and empowering them to make the right decision.
He said, to address the unsolicited calls received by consumers, NCC had introduced the DO Not Disturb (DND) facility where consumers were urged to activate the service by dialing 2442, and the 622 for the NCC customer complaint.
“The world over, the consumer is a major stakeholder in any enterprise especially in the telecommunications sector. The consumer supplies the blood line that keeps the Telcos in business and churning out more service. If the consumer is satisfied, the revenue belt increase,” he said.
In marking the 2017 Year of the Telecom Consumer, the commission unveiled Nigeria comedian, Helen Paul and Movie Actor, Ali Nuhu as Face of 2017 Nigerian Telecom Consumer.
President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, represented by Senator Solomon Adeola, Chairman Senate Committee on Communication, in his keynote address, said “there are very few sectors that have represented the undisputable strength and growth potential of the Nigerian economy as communication sector is built to be lead by the private sector.
“Commemorating the 2017 World Consumer Right Day, it’s imperative that as stakeholders we induce the impact that Telecommunication Company has had in the life of citizen and create awareness of possibilities, which the use of internet and other information technology has brought to the Nigerian telecom consumers.
“The impact of telecoms on the life of Nigerians is evidence on business, education, religion, agriculture, security and our social life. Just as consumer using mobile phone continues to be on the rise, there is need for more efficient implementation of consumer protection law to combat poor service delivery.”