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NCC Gives Voice to Subscribers with Consumer Advocacy

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Telecommunications sector is the only sector of the country’s economy that consumer’s right are protected as well as given opportunity to interfaced with service providers.
It stands on a tripod.
This did not happen spontaneously; it is as a result of regulatory framework initiated by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) led by Ernest Ndukwe.
The consumer wants the services to be of a good quality and affordable. The consumer wants the operator to respond at all times when he or she needs attention, and to provide explanations whenever anything goes wrong. The consumer wants to be protected at all times from being taken advantage of by service providers. Just like consumers of any services, the consumer of telecom services wants to be well treated. The Commission has recognized all these and has put in place special structures to ensure that the needs and desires of the consumer are taken care of. For NCC, the consumer is the main object, the subject and the reason for their being.
Against this backdrop, that the sector has good number of consumer advocacy groups that are active in the industry which the commission is supporting to ensure that interest of consumers are taken care of, such groups include, National Association of Telecommunications Consumers Association (Natcomms), Consumer Right Project, among others.
The Regulatory Process
The Commission has many stakeholders in the regulatory process. These stakeholders include the government, consumers, the operators, the media, and the international community, among few others. The Commission strives to meet the expectations of the many stakeholders.
Government
Government is a very important stakeholder in the job of telecom regulation. The policy and the laws being implemented by the Commission have been prepared and enacted by government for good of society. The Government’s interest in the process is also varied.
Government is interested that services are made available to the Nigerian people in a timely, qualitative and affordable manner, and that activities in the sector are carried out in a legal and orderly manner. Government is also interested in creating an enabling environment that would continue to attract investment in the sector so that her desires for the people are substantially met.
The Commission in all its activities is therefore mindful of the need to protect, preserve and implement actions and programmes that meet the expectations and objectives of government.
The Operators: The operators also belong to a class of stakeholders in the business of telecom regulation. Apart from obtaining their operational licenses, with certain obligations attached to them, the operators also expect certain obligations from government and the regulator. They expect a non partial regulator to protect their huge investments. They want the Commission to ensure that no other entity interferes with their network resources such as frequency spectrum. They expect a regulator that will not be arbitrary in decision making and one that will regulate by the rules as contained in the license agreement and provisions of the laws and regulations.
The Consumer: The Commission does not just theorize about empowering the consumer in industry, it has given practical expressions to this phenomenon through actions, policies and programmes which have venerated, empowered, protected and uplifted him/her in the comity of stakeholders in the industry. Prior to the enactment of the Nigerian Communications Act, 2003, the Commission had in September 2001 established a full fledged department called Consumer Affairs Bureau. The Bureau was charged with PIE mandate – to Protect, Inform and Educate the Nigerian telecoms consumers. This mandate has remained an irrevocable social contract between the Commission and telecoms consumers in our nation. In a bid to protect, inform and educated consumers, the Commission held its maiden Consumer Forum at Flamingo Restaurant in Victoria Island in April 2002 and shortly after in August 2003, launched the monthly Telecoms Consumer Parliament, a novel regulatory initiative that earned the Commission, nay Nigeria, commendations from ITU and ICT professionals and groups across the globe. At the last count, 46 sessions of Telecoms Consumer Parliament has helped in no small measure in creating awareness of the rights of consumers and the obligation s of the service providers in the resolution of their problems and concerns. It has enable operators to clarify issues pertaining to service delivery for the benefit of their subscribers and also to publicly give account of their stewardship to the people. Useful feedbacks have emanated from the programme which culminated in far-reaching regulatory interventions by the Commission.
The Commission has over the years proactively enunciated policies and programmes that served the interest of the consumers through the introduction of price caps within which operators were allowed to charge consumers for services provided in accordance with global best practice, introduced competition in all segments of the telecom services portfolio to ensure that consumers have a wide range of products and services to choose from; and are not held to ransom by any service provider. Based on feedbacks received from consumers at the TCP, the Commission intervened on the issue of charging subscribers for calls made to customer care lines to lay consumers complaints.
In line with the commissions consumer-centric philosophy that it inaugurated an twelve-man Industry Consumer Advisory Forum, (ICAF), headed by Mrs. Ifeyinwa Umenyi the director general of the Consumer Protection Council, to review the general consumer code of practice regulations by the Commission as well as facilitate consumer protection, information and educational programmes.
ICAF will act in advisory capacity, and will make recommendations to the Commission regarding the interests and concerns of the consumer of ICT products and services, the interests and concerns of physically challenged and the elderly, ensure that consumers are protected from unfair practices and facilitate the review of the Consumer Code of Practice Regulations 2007 as well as make recommendations on all issues to the Commission.
The Commission has also defined acceptable quality of service thresholds which operators are expected to meet on the one hand, as well as sanctions in event of failure to meet those thresholds. In order to ensure compliance by operators, regular monitoring by the Commission of the operations of licensees across the length and breath of the country is undertaken.
Periodic reports on these monitoring activities are published on the website of the Commission and in major national newspapers.
To underscore the importance that the Board and management of the Commission attach to improved QoS on the networks, an industry QoS Working Group was set up with members drawn from the public and private sectors of the economy.
In 2007, the Commission caused to be gazetted Consumer Code of Practice Regulation which has become the reference document for both consumers and the operators. Each licensee is required to produce and submit a Code of Practice which has to be reviewed and approved by the Commission. The Code of Practice stipulates Service Level Agreements, the responsibilities and rights of each party, and procedure for resolving disagreements whenever they arise between parties.
Given the diversity of the country coupled with its geographical vastness, the Commission has taken it upon itself to promote and nurture consumerism by identifying and collaborating with reputable Consumer Advocacy Groups to facilitate nation-wide consumer protection and empowerment as a precondition for orderly and sustainable growth and development for the telecoms industry in Nigeria.


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Glo Simplifies Customers’ Access to Company’s Information

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Globacom has demystified what used to be a cumbersome task of getting company’s information from its website, a situation that had in the past, frustrated several customers from getting relevant information from company’s website.

It is now easy for companies and organizations to give their stakeholders free access to their websites through a service called Sponsored Data on the Globacom network.

Through the service, customers and other members of the public will be able to browse the website of the sponsoring company even when the members of public have no active data subscription.

Explaining the service, Globacom said companies would be able to buy data buckets and subsequently allow their existing and prospective customers or any other member of the public to access their websites, apps and other data services without having to expend their own data. The cost of access by the end-user is borne by the sponsoring companies.

Globacom in a statement disclosed that Sponsored Data service is a more targeted and effective method of inducing trial of the sponsoring company’s digital products as well as free trial and free sampling of its content.

The telecom operator said the service would give better return on investment (ROI) to the sponsoring companies, adding that it will facilitate over 70 per cent increase in customer engagement and foster incremental revenue through the engagement of new customers. The company said this service would be particularly beneficial to betting companies, IT and Technology companies, manufacturing concerns, banks, schools and others.

Globacom said staff of the sponsoring companies who are on the Glo network could also benefit from the sponsored data plans.

According to Globacom, there are various options for companies and organisations wishing to use the sponsored service as they are free to choose from sponsored data buckets ranging from 200GB to 50TB, according to their needs.

Globacom said “the plans are already available on the network and are valid for renewable 30 days.”

Globacom said it would continue to come out with solutions that would boost customer’s experience, especially at the period of CoVID-19 that has increased online activities of organisations, since most customers and staff of organisations have shifted to online activities in order to align with the new normal, brought about by COVID-19 pandemic that has negatively impacted on businesses.


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Samsung Galaxy S20 FE: Inspired by Fans for the Fans

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Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. has revealed the Galaxy S20 Fan Edition (FE), the newest member of the Galaxy S20 series. Galaxy S20 FE is a premium flagship smartphone that includes innovations Galaxy fans told us they love most, and it is also made available at an accessible price point.

COVID-19 disrupted the world as we knew it and technology is now playing a more crucial role in our lives and that is why we created Galaxy S20 FE; to deliver flagship experiences to more consumers.

Samsung took select features of the Galaxy S20 series, such as the super smooth scrolling display, an AI-powered camera, advanced chipset, hyper-fast connectivity, all day battery, expandable storage, with a streamlined premium design, in order to create the all-new Galaxy S20 FE.

“The S20 FE is an extension of the Galaxy S20 family and is the start of a new way to bring meaningful innovation to even more people to let them do the things they love with the best of Galaxy.” Says Mr. Caden Yu, the Managing Director, Samsung Electronics West Africa

All you want, to do what you love

Express the best of yourself when out on a day trip or at night catching fun with a pop of color that reflects your personal style, attitude and personality. The S20 FE comes in variant colors of Cloud Red, Cloud Lavender, Cloud Mint and Cloud Navy.

With the S20 FE, the fun never stops. The pro grade camera and 30X Space zoom help you capture memorable moments whether near or far at day time.

Plus, the night mode multi-frame and powerful performance gets you through the fun nights and the 4500mAH battery keeps you on all day with little in between time to recharge using the 15W fast charging.

And since life can be unpredictable, the Galaxy S20 FE is water and dust resistant; IP68 rated. Better yet, when accidents happens, one can rest easy knowing the 24 months warranty and Screen repair offer that comes with Pre order has got your back.

Pre order

The S20 FE is available for pre order from the 9th of October with a Wireless Bluetooth earphones, Clear Standing cover and Screen repair offer. You also get a 4 month Free Subscription on YouTube premium. Trade In Discount Offer also available from Pre order. Trade in your old phones and enjoy discount on the S20 FE

Launch

The S20 FE would be officially available in the market from the 23rd of October. Visit any of our Samsung Experience Store nationwide for an amazing and pleasurable experience.

Device Specifications

With its variants of colors, S20 FE comes with a 6GB RAM/128GB ROM, a long lasting battery of 4500mAh with 15W fast charging, a 32MP selfie camera and a 120Hz Super-Amoled display.


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MTN Revv Programme: Experts Train SMEs on Customer Experience and Data Analytics

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Experts at the latest edition of the Revv Programme masterclass have trained SME owners how to improve customer experience and maximise data analytics to scale their business growth.

 

The virtual conference themed: “Redefining customer experience through effective customer relationship management and data analytics” which was held on Wednesday, September 23, 2020.

 

Panelists at the conference included the Olubayo Adekanmbi, Chief Transformation Officer, MTN Nigeria,  Ugonwa Nwoye, Chief Customer Relations Officer, MTN Nigeria, Adenike Ogunlesi, founder and Chief Responsibility Officer, Ruff N’ Tumble,  Chairman, Fasmi CRO Group, Prof. Ndubuisi Ekekwe and Principal consultant, Niche Customer Experience Consulting Firm, Debbie Akwara.

 

Olubayo Adekanmbi, who is an astute business leader and recognised data scientist, shared insights on the customer mindset in a post-COVID economy.

 

According to him, “Even though we are in a new normal, we are still dealing with a person who has the capacity to adjust to every environment.

 

“As SMEs we have to observe the environment, learn from it and take actions accordingly”.

 

Ugonwa Nwoye brings over 25 years of management experience across industries including Oil and Gas.

 

She advised the participating SMEs to pay attention to diverse customer channels as they arise.

 

“You need to meet the customers where they are. To achieve this, a good customer database is essential. You need to know the kind of channels your customer wants to be reached.”

 

While sharing her experience as an entrepreneur of over three decades, Adenike Ogunlesi emphasized that customers want to feel good where they spend their money.

 

“The most important thing is that regardless of the technological tools you deploy today, it is all about the experiential economy which is the way you make people feel.”

 

While thanking MTN for the Revv initiative she noted, “This sort of platform allows SMEs to learn much quicker than the opportunity we got thirty years ago, well done to MTN”.

 

The Revv Programme was launched in August by MTN Nigeria as an initiative to train over 10,000 SMEs by adopting a four-pronged approach that includes masterclass sessions, support with productivity tools, access to market and advisory initiatives.

 

The programme seeks to help SMEs relearn, readjust, and retool their businesses in a post-COVID economy.

 

Since inception, over 5,000 entrepreneurs have attended the Revv masterclasses with more than thirty business leaders and industry experts across different sectors facilitating the sessions.

 

Participants at the masterclasses have been enjoined to take full advantage of the programme for a chance to join Y’ello 200, an accelerator programme by MTN Nigeria where select small business owners will access a broad range of technology and productivity support tools in addition to expert advisory.

 


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