Subscribers Push for Boycott of Multichoice Services over Fresh Tariff Hikes



Some Nigerians have urged subscribers of Multichoice Nigeria, operators of  DStv and GOtv, to boycott the firm while petitioning the federal government, regulatory agencies, and the National Assembly to intervene and ‘save Nigerians from alleged exploitation, according to ConsumerConnect .

This is coming as the Pay-Tv announced a second price increase for its DStv and GOtv packages this year, with hikes of at least 19 per cent across all bouquets

Multichoice Nigeria on Wednesday, November 1, 2023, announced fresh price increments in its DStv and GOtv packages after the first one it had announced and effected May 1, 2023.

According to Multichoice in  a letter dated November 1 and addressed to its partners, had stated: “On Monday, November 6, 2023, we will adjust our prices across all our packages on DStv and GOtv.

“We understand the impact this challenge may have on our valued customers and partners, but the rise in the cost of business operations, had led us to make this difficult decision.”

Multichoice also noted: “It remains our mission to provide the best entertainment and viewing experience to our valued customers and are committed to continue to deliver high-quality content and unparalleled service to our customers.”

The new tariff  for Premium bouquet, has been adjusted from N24,500 to N29,500; Compact+, from N16,600 to N19,800; Compact, from N10,500 to N12,500; Confam, from N6,200 to N7,400, among others.

However, for GOtv consumers, Supa+ price has increased from N10,500 to N12, 500; Supa moved from N6400 to N7,600; Max from N4850 to N5,700; Jolli, from N3,300 to N3,950, among others.

Multichoice Nigeria financials showed that the operator generated N277 billion for its financial year end March 31, 2023,

The company’s revenue, by implication, recorded 29 percent growth, compared to the N177.5 billion recorded in the previous year.

Reacting to the tariff hike, Sina Bilesanmi, president, Association of Telephone, Cable TV and Internet Subscribers of Nigeria (ATCIS), called for boycott of both DStv and GOtv by subscribers in Nigeria, stressing that the new price hike is exploitative in nature.

Bilesanmi contended it was the “fourth time” the operators would effect price hikes in 2023 in Nigeria.

He stated: “I cannot believe this is happening at this time. The brand is just exploiting the Nigerian market, all because no alternative yet!

“I will employ all Nigerians to boycott both DStv and GOtv services. I also call on President Tinubu, the National Assembly to step in and save Nigerians from this exploitation.”

According to him, ACTIS had met with President Tinubu August this year,  and demanded his intervention by asking these operators to give customers Pay Per View.

ACTIS recalled that “President Tinubu said we should give him time then. But I think the time is now for the entire country to rise against this exploitation by Multichoice.”

Bilesanmi also noted that the Association had written about 20 letters since 2020 to Multichoice on Pay Per View, and other issues in the industry, but the company feigned ignorance to these letters.

Earlier April 2023, Nigerians also had reacted angrily to Multichoice increments in subscription tariffs for both DStv and GOtv packages.

The company in its message to consumers had stated: “Please note that from May 1, your monthly subscription (premium) will be N24,500. To retain your old price of N21,000 for up to 12 months, ensure you are active by April 30.”

One of the subscribers then, simply took to his social media page and wrote: “You’ll soon pack up.”

Another simply identified as Morene Ajike, an Abuja-based businesswoman, who reportedly asked: “Nigeria is a country of over 200 million people.

“How come its citizens depend solely on a foreign company to view soccer stations, African Magic and other entertainment channels? All these things still points to corruption.”

She also alleged: “Companies like Multichoice closes the mouth of our political leaders with bribe and extorts citizens.”

Likewise, Bilesanmi had said of the idea: “Yes, we are aware of the South African hike and know that it is a sign of what will happen in Nigeria.

“They will hide under the guise of spiraling inflation and others to hike tariffs. But we have always pushed for pay-per-view.

“And if they say they do not have the technology or precedent globally to implement that template, they should think about a technology that allows us to retain our subscription when we don’t use it.”

He further explained: “For instance, if I subscribe and I am unable to use my subscription either because I am not around or I do not have cash to fuel my generator, I should be able to use it or roll it over when I subscribe again.”

Again, several subscribers have asked how Multichoice can actually justify its claim of delivering value and accessible services to its Nigerian customers?

“Is it by making life unbearable and contributing to the hardship that is already killing the people.

“How can Multichoice say it acknowledges that the people of Nigeria are living under increased economic pressure and yet hit them harder with price hike?”

Credit : ConsumerConnect .



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