NCC to conduct financial health checks on telcos

The House of Representatives on Thursday asked the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), have to immediately conduct financial forensics on all telecom operators to determine their health status.

The order came as telecoms operators in the country once seen as flourishing are today battling to survive due to unfavourable economic policies been implemented by the government.

The situation has forced some of them to rationalize staff; some have moved their Network Operating Centres (NOCs) to India; while some are faced with difficulties in meeting with their creditor obligations.

Saheed Akinade-Fijabi, chairman, House Committee on Telecommunications, issued the directive in Abuja after an emergency meeting with the management of the NCC, led by Mr Sunday Dare, its executive commissioner (Stakeholder Management).

Fijabi said the action became necessary in order to determine the true situation of things in the operations of the telecoms operators in the country, to prevent further loss of revenue to the federal government and loss of jobs by Nigerians in the sector.

Fijabi said the action became necessary in order to determine the true situation of things in the operations of the telecoms operators in the country, to prevent further loss of revenue to the Federal Government and loss of jobs by Nigerians in the sector.

It would be recalled that what telecommunications operators are facing today is how it started with Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operators which cumulated in distress of all the operators in the subsector of the industry.

When it started, stakeholders cried out to government and Nigerian Communications Commission for intervention in order to save the operators of imminent distress to no avail.

The Board of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), under the Chairmanship of Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye held an emergency meeting on Wednesday July 5, 2017 to review the Etisalat issue in its entirety and also review the intervention made by the NCC Management.

Meanwhile, the NCC Board has commended the management for its handling of the Etisalat issue till date, noting that the Board has had a three-fold concern:  ensuring continuous service to the over 21 million Etisalat subscribers, safeguarding the employees, and stabilizing the telecom sector to ensure its contribution to GDP is not impacted and investment interest continues.

The Board commended the cooperation and inter-agency collaboration exhibited by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) as a fellow regulator.

The Board directed Management to ensure at all times that telcos meet the financial and technical integrity standards expected of them. – Nigeria Comms Week.

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