Buhari Replaces NCC Executive Commissioner, Others

Muhammadu Buhari, Owed Debt, States
President Muhammadu Buhari (file).

 

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved replacements for the heads of Federal Government agencies that were recently appointed as ministers.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, announced this in a statement on Tuesday.

He said President Buhari has forwarded Mr Adeleke Adewolu’s name to the Senate for confirmation as a replacement for Mr Sunday Dare.

Mr Dare was the Executive Commissioner (Stakeholder Management) at the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) until his appointment as a minister.

According to the presidential aide, Senator Basheer Mohammed also replaces Sadiya Farouk as the Federal Commissioner, National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons.

Shehu added that the President appointed Dr Chioma Ejikeme as the Executive Secretary of the Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate, replacing Sharon Ikeazor.

Similarly, President Buhari appointed Kashifu Abdullahi as the Director-General/CEO of the National Information Technology Development Agency.

The President’s spokesman said the appointments take immediate effect.

Senate To Summon National Communications Commission (NCC)

 

The Nigerian Senate has resolved to summon the National Communications Commission (NCC) over dropped calls and poor registration of sim cards.

The resolution followed a motion on the increasing rate of dropped calls and unwholesome practices by telecommunication network operators in the country.

According to the lawmakers, there are worries that the dropped calls unwholesome practices are robbing Nigerians of their hard earned monies.

Hence, the lawmakers also want refunds for disrupted calls caused by network issues.

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The decision to summon the NCC is because the Senate believes the agency has not lived up to its regulatory responsibilities.

President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan, vowed that the Senate would blacklist operators where necessary.

This is not the first time a motion on poor telecommunications service will be brought before the National Assembly, as it was raised in both chambers of the 8th assembly.

However, President of the Senate, Lawan assured that the Senate will take real actions this time.

Mobile Porting Activities Decline By 53% – NCC

NCC

 

The Nigerian Communications Commission has reported a decline of 53 percent in mobile number portability activities by telecommunications operators

The data which covers the past two years shows that the industry recorded a total of 14,491 incoming and outgoing porting activities in November 2018, compared to 31,077 in November 2016

While the data indicates a 13 percent resurgence between October and November 2018, 9mobile topped the incoming table, gaining 2,608 customers.

MTN Nigeria added 2,173 as Airtel took the third place with 1,469.

The data shows Globacom in the fourth place, adding only 714 subscribers.

Mobile number portability was introduced by the NCC in 2013 to promote healthy competition among telecom networks and ensure consumer satisfaction.

COSON Crisis: Tu Baba Asks Nigeria Copyright Commission For Help

Multiple Award-winning singer, Innocent Idibia popularly known as Tu Baba has called on the Nigeria Copyright Commission (NCC) to urgently enforce its position in the lingering crisis rocking Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON).

The music star, in the petition, which is addressed to the Director General of NCC, Alam Ezekude, copied the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, Senate President Bukola Saraki, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and President Muhammadu Buhari, calling for help.

He explained that some members of the COSON’s board who are seeking accountability and transparency are allegedly being harassed and intimidated by police force.

“It is quite unfortunate and disheartening that a simple call for accountability and transparency has degenerated into relentless media attack, harassment and intimidation of the group of people who made the call.

“The personal interest of a few should not supersede the collective interest of generality of members and overall well being of the society.

“I will like to implore you to use your good office to engage the Inspector General of Police with a view to setting the records straight and reversing the embarrassing and dangerous scenario where Mr Efe Omorogbe and Mr Joel Ajayi, chairman and members of the commission-recognised board acting well under the directive of the regulator, are now being harassed, intimidated, demonised and prosecuted by a sister government agency – The Nigerian Police Force,” Tubaba’s petitioned read in part.

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He commended the commission for its position on the lingering crisis at COSON but said he wishes to, through the petition, lend his voice to growing call for further action to ensure total compliance to the commission’s directives by all parties.

“COSON is formed and built by the collective efforts of like-minded industry stalwarts, and it will be a shame to see all of the hard work that has gone into building the society, go down the drain.

“Our CMO is under siege and our commonwealth is threatened by Chief Tony Okoroji and his agents who for personal ends, continue to demonstrate deep contempt for regulation and the call for accountability,” Tuface said in the petition.

The Music legend said Nigeria is a nation of laws and the music industry stakeholders and regular citizens have only the government to turn to for protection at perilous.

INEC To Begin Electronic Collation, Transmission Of Results

INEC: Endless Litigations Hindering Democratic Processes In Nigeria
File photo: Mahmood Yakubu

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says the time has come for it to go digital in conducting electoral processes across the nation.

The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, in a statement signed on Wednesday by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Lawrence Oyekanmi said the commission hopes to commence the use of the electronic process in its collation and transmission of results as soon as possible.

“The time has come to electronically collate and transmit election results. We are convinced that by doing so, results will be transmitted faster and more accurately from the Polling Units to the various collation and declaration centres.

“In several re-run and bye-elections conducted since the 2015 General Elections, the Commission has deployed the electronic collation and transmission platforms on a pilot basis. More recently, we conducted simultaneous electronic and manual transmission of results in some major elections,” he said.

 

While stating that the commission would launch the new innovation with the governorship elections of Ekiti and Osun States in July and September, its success would herald the eventual usage in the 2019 general elections.

Yakubu who had ealier visited the Headquarters of the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) expressed hopes that there would be an effective collaboration between both commissions in order to achieve the planned project.

On its part, the NCC’s Chairman, Umar Danbatta reiterated his agency’s commitment to partnering with the electoral body to achieve free, fair and credible elections.

He said: “We will bring to bear, our wealth of experience in the area of information and communications technology expertise in ensuring that the 2019 elections meet with the yearnings and aspirations of Nigerians. We are about to witness what has never happened. We will be active participants. We will offer our operational experience to ensure that we obtain the desired results.”

The two organisations immediately set up a technical committee, comprising members from both sides to work out the details of the collaboration.

NCC Investigates Circulation Of Unregistered Sim

Failed Data Tariff Increment Decision Was To Protect Consumers – NCC‎

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) says it has begun a swift investigation into the allegations that some telecom service providers still allow unregistered SIM into circulation.

The Chairman of the NCC Governing Board, Mr Olabiyi Durojaiye, said this at the corporate governance sensitization workshop in Enugu, organised to encourage licensees and other industry players to own the code of corporate governance.

He explained that the commission has put up monitoring and compliance mechanisms to encourage willful and deliberate licensees with the principles of the code.

“The commission has instituted a reward system which is aimed at recognizing and celebrating compliant licensees. The commission will periodically conduct stress text on its licenses in order to ascertain their viability as it’s contained in the extant laws of Nigeria.”

Durojaiye also noted that the commission is currently leading a campaign for youth empowerment through research and development.

He, however, called on stakeholders to continue to entrench corporate governance and sustainability principle and continue in promoting equity in the sector.

NCC Approves Etisalat’s Name Change To 9mobile

NCCThe Nigeria Telecommunications Commission (NCC) has approved Etisalat Nigeria’s name change to 9mobile, after its United Arab Emirates parent company pulled out of its brand name and shares, over the Nigerian unit’s multi-million-dollar debt to a consortium of 13 local banks.

The telecoms regulator says the move is to ensure the continuity of Nigeria’s fourth largest telecom operator, adding that Etisalat Nigeria has started the process of re-branding.

The NCC must approve a transfer of telecoms licenses or any new investor in a telecoms company with more than 10 percent of the shares. Under local telecoms laws.

Etisalat Nigeria is expected to unveil the new corporate brand today.

NCC, CBN Intervene In Etisalat Debt Crisis

NCC, CBN Get Reprieve For EtisalatA meeting between the officials of Etisalat Nigeria, Nigerian Communications Commission, the Central Bank of Nigeria and a consortium of banks has reportedly been scheduled for tomorrow, June the 21, to find a resolution to the debt crisis troubling the telecoms company.

Competent sources told Channels Television today that several meetings are ongoing at the NCC and the CBN after talks between about 10 Nigerian banks and Etisalat Nigeria broke down.

The sources confirmed that part of the $1.2billion bank credit obtained by Etisalat Nigeria has been paid back since 2013 when the loans were first structured.

The three parties are also expected to issue a joint statement on the matter tomorrow.

Earlier today, the Etisalat Group, the parent company of Etisalat Nigeria, informed the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange that a group of Nigerian commercial banks refused to agree to the restructuring of the debt (which amounts to 541 billion naira) owed by the company.

The telecoms group said in a statement that its total shares in Etisalat Nigeria have been transferred to United Capital Trustees Limited.

The deadline for the transfer of the shares has been agreed to extend till 5:00 pm Nigerian time on Friday, June 23.

Abu-Dhabi based Etisalat group established Etisalat Nigeria with effective 45 per cent and 25 per cent ordinary and preference shares respectively.

Reuters quoted an official of Etisalat Nigeria as saying that discussions with the group of Nigerian commercial lenders are ongoing to find a ”non-disruptive” solution to the debt.

MTN Rewards Nhleko For Negotiating Reduced Fine With NCC

Bayelsa NSCDC Uncovers Plot To Attack MTNAfrica’s largest telecommunication company, the MTN group, has rewarded its Executive Chairman, Phuthuma Nhleko, with 5.6 million dollars in pay and bonuses for negotiating a reduced fine with the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC).

Mr Nhleko also rejigged MTN group’s senior management team after taking over on short notice, following Former Chief, Sififo Dabengw’s resignation in November 2015.

The report also listed Mr Nhleko’s achievements to include the repatriation of funds from Iran and the review of corporate governance standards, among others.

The telecom giant was said to have allegedly transferred 13.92 billion dollars out of Nigeria through its bankers between 2006 and 2016.

The transaction was purportedly facilitated by four commercial banks in the country.

After much negotiation and renegotiation, MTN Nigeria agreed to pay a reduced fine of 330 billion Naira (about $1.67 billion) to the Federal Government in six installments over the next three years.

NCC, CBN Get Reprieve For Etisalat

NCC, CBN Get Reprieve For EtisalatThe Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) have succeeded in halting an attempt by Etisalat’s creditors to take over the company.

A statement by the spokesman for NCC, Tony Ojobo, said reprieve came for the mobile network operator during a meeting held on Friday.

According to the statement, receivership was completely taken off the table in a meeting that was very productive and constructive.

“The meeting, which held at the CBN Office in Lagos, had the consortium of banks being owed and Etisalat in attendance. The banks and the mobile network operator agreed to concrete actions that will bring all parties closest to a resolution.

“The CBN and NCC were able to secure for Etisalat the necessary oxygen to enable it continue to meet urgent operational expenses.

“CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, who chaired the meeting, was firm in declaring what needed to be done by both parties towards a quick resolution. The NCC equally made it clear that everything necessary must be done to protect the 23 million Etisalat subscribers and also protect the telecom industry to prevent potential investors from developing cold feet.

“Meanwhile, in a renewed effort to ensure that Etisalat remains in business while the consortium of banks meet their obligations to their customers, a meeting will hold on March 16 to agree on a payment restructuring path going forward.

“The NCC will lead the CBN in a possible crucial meeting with Etisalat’s shareholders anytime soon,” the statement read.

Failed Data Tariff Increment Decision Was To Protect Consumers – NCC‎

Failed Data Tariff Increment Decision Was To Protect Consumers – NCC‎The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) on Thursday said that the suspended earlier plan by the commission to increase data tariff charges by telecom operators was to protect consumers and new telecom operators.

NCC Deputy Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau, Ismail Adedigba, made this known in Osogbo while answering questions from journalists at the 81st edition of the commission’s “Consumer Outreach Programme.’’

According to Adedigba, the decision to increase data was to avoid running into monopoly whereby only one service provider will enjoy the sole right of charging consumer any price for data services.

He said: “We don’t want to run into monopoly, because if you allow anybody to charge any price, some big operators can charge lower price today and get all the customers to their network at the expense of new entrants.

“Once these big operators know that the new entrants have failed, they could not provide service because it is not profitable, they will now keep increasing their own price, knowing there is no competition.

“The consumers will now have no alternative to choose from when the tariff is now increased, as the new entrants must have been crippled and left the market for the big operators.’’

He said it was better to have competition than have one segment of the telecom market killed due to predatory pricing, which necessitated the need for data tariff price regulation.

Adedigba said that the data tariff price increment remained suspended for now, due to the outcry of stakeholders, especially the consumers.

He said the commission would however continue to keep engaging the people to really know that the action of the NCC and what the commission is doing is to actually protect the consumers and the telecom industry.

Earlier, in his welcome address, the NCC Director of Consumer Affairs Bureau, Mr Abdullah Maikano, said that the consumer outreach programme of the commission was to bring together telecom consumers in urban areas with network operators.

Maikano said such togetherness was to discuss, proffer solutions to consumer related issues and ensure value for money through effective service delivery.

He said the theme of the programme “Information and Education as a Catalyst for Consumer Protection,’’ was chosen to reflect one of the cardinal objectives of the commission of ensuring that telecom consumers are protected from market exploitation.

The director said that it was also to empower consumers to make rational decision when making their choices of services that would provide them with value for their money.

He said any telecom subscriber that is having unresolved issues with his or her telecom service provider can report to the NCC on a toll free number-622 or through their Twitter and other social media platforms.

Major telecom service operators in the country were on ground answering and preferring solutions to the problems of their service subscribers.

Yobe Govt. Challenges Journalists On Professional Reportage

Yobe, Journalists, NUJ, ReportageThe Yobe State Government has tasked journalists to sharpen their reportorial skills, as the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) doles out 110 laptops to its members in the state.

The Special Adviser to the Yobe State Governor, Abdullahi Bego, challenged the journalists to take advantage of the new information technologies to improve on their reportorial skills.

He disclosed that the 110 laptops were given free to the council by the Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC) with the aim to widen the prospects of journalism practice in Yobe State and to also meet the challenges of modern day journalism.

The Governor’s spokesman praised journalists who remained in the troubled northeast region to keep the society informed about happenings during the heat of the Boko Haram insurgency.

With the development in information and communication technology, he said although everybody has an opportunity to be a journalist, being professional would make the difference.

Bego urged the reporters to rise up to the task, saying the development in the ICT world requires more from them in terms of adding more flesh to what makes the headlines.

He also tasked them to be more in-depth and truthful in their reportage and make the best use of social media websites such as the Facebook, Instagram and Twitter among others”.

The Zonal Vice President of NUJ in charge of Zone E, Aisha Ibrahim, commended the partnership between the Yobe State Executive Council and NCC and urged members of the union to make the best use of it.

She said the ICT training would go a long way in improving professionalism among the journalists and called on them to leverage on the knowledge acquired in their day to day professional duties.

On his part, the Yobe State Chairman of NUJ, Yusuf Isah, thanked the state government and the NCC for the gesture, saying it would greatly uplift the status of journalism in the state and beyond.

He said that the union would commence an ICT training, in view of the new trends in journalism to educate members on how to face new challenges.