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In Abuja Lawmakers task NCC to sanction telecom service providers over exploitation

The called was sequel to a motion raised by Rep. Ali Madaki (Kano-APC) under matters of urgent public importance.

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House of Representatives Speaker Yakubu Dogara play

House of Representatives Speaker Yakubu Dogara

(Sun news)

The House of Representatives on Wednesday, August 12, urged the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to apply relevant laws in checking exploitative activities of telecommunication service providers in the country.

The called was sequel to a motion raised by Rep. Ali Madaki (Kano-APC) under matters of urgent public importance.

Moving the motion which was unanimously adopted by members, Madaki stressed the need for NCC to quickly address inefficient service delivery, exploitative tariff system and unsolicited Short Message Services (SMS).

"We all aware of what is happening in the telecommunication industry where service providers indulge in all sorts of sharp practices to make money.

"They have formed the habit of providing unsolicited services without customers' consent and charge arbitrarily for such services without recourse to whether the customer asked or subscribed to such services or not,’’ Madaki said.

Leader of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila (Lagos-APC) described the practice as harassment and invasion of privacy under the country’s law.

"The Constitution guarantees our privacy and also protects us from harassment of any kind.

"So, these messages violate the constitutional provision that protects peoples’ privacy.

"Everywhere in the world, there are laws guiding the conduct of business operations, and we have such laws as well.

"So, I urge that we apply the law appropriately to safeguard ourselves against this abuse,’’ Gbajabiamila said.

Similarly, Minority Leader of the House, Rep. Leo Ogor (Delta-PDP), insisted that the conduct of the companies was unacceptable.

"A situation where you call somebody and you can't speak with the person but you are charged for a call that wasn't complete is a breach of contract.

"Another aspect is where they bombard you with unsolicited text messages and news alerts using short codes for which you never subscribed is highly outrageous and unacceptable,’’ Ogor stated.

Rep. Amadi Dennis (Enugu-PDP) said "this is the only country where telecommunication operators make so much money without considering the welfare of its customers.

After the resolution that NCC should take immediate steps to check the excesses of the service providers, Speaker of the House, Yakubu Dogara, referred the matter to the Committee on Communication, when constituted, for legislative action.

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