NCC, telecoms operators pledge to revisit compensation policy

The Nigerian Communications Commission and the telecoms operators have agreed to revisit the compensation policy introduced to address complaints from the telecoms services subscribers.

The decision was part of the steps taken yesterday by the NCC and the operators at the regular bi-annual meeting of NCC and Senior Executives of telecommunication companies on complaints management.

In a statement issued at the end of the meeting by the Director, Public Affairs of the NCC, Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde, the Commission said that the decision is to ensure full compliance with the new Complaint Categories and Service Level Agreement (CC/SLA) consented to by the NCC and the service providers in the telecommunication ecosystem.

And for the first time, due to the COVID-19 management protocols instituted by the Federal Government, the meeting was held virtually.

At the meeting, which focused on consumer relations and complaint management processes, the NCC and the telecom service providers, the duo also agreed that the telecoms operators complied with at all times.

In addition, it was decided that the Commission and telecom service providers will hold follow-up discussions on “Fair Usage Policy” on unlimited data bundles/data rollover, in order to provide a clearer explanation and better understanding of the processes and procedures of the policy for the benefit of the consumers.

“The Commission hereby wishes to restate that its direction of June 2018 to service providers to commence implementation of data rollover from 26 June 2018, remains in force. In other words, a subscriber’s unused data must be rolled over to his/her subsequent data subscription. Therefore, the Commission urges service providers to continue to inform and educate subscribers on the procedures and processes for data rollover”, the statement said.

According to the NCC, service providers also agreed to ensure that senior-level customer relations officers support their respective complaints management teams, to resolve complaints that were not resolved to the satisfaction of the consumers when such complaints were first reported.

It added that the service providers also promised to ensure that complaints are resolved in both the letter and spirit of the recently-reviewed Service Level Agreement (SLA).

“With respect to services subscribed to through third parties (such as banks), which are not rendered, the meeting resolved that telecom service providers should explore initiating service level agreement with banks to ensure uniformity and speed in the resolution of complaints relating to billing”, said the NCC.

Adinde further said that all parties to the meeting equally agreed that telecom service providers will carry out pervasive consumer education and enlightenment campaigns about their products and services to ensure their subscribers have the information they require to make informed decisions and get value for money spent.

“The commission wishes to state that it was very pleased with the impressive attendance, participation, and the quality of decisions taken at the bi-annual meeting. The NCC is, therefore, determined to continue to work closely with the service providers and other stakeholders in the Nigerian telecom sector in order to improve on the quality of service, and by implication, the quality of consumer experience”, said the NCC.

The bi-annual meeting, which has held regularly since 2018, focuses on ensuring improvement in Quality of Service (QoS) and Quality of Experience (QoE) in the telecom industry. It has served as a veritable platform for the Commission and service providers to discuss and agree on measures that will enhance prompt and effective consumer complaint resolution in telecom service provision in Nigeria.

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