The Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, has enjoined telecoms licensees to always comply with the provisions of extant laws, subsidiary legislation and other regulatory frameworks put in place by the Commission to ensure a more competitive and sustainable telecoms sector in Nigeria.
The EVC gave the charge at a two-day tripartite dialogue of the Commission tagged, ‘Talk To The Regulator (TTTR) Forum,’ which was held in Kano at the weekend.
Danbatta said while the Commission continues to engender an effective regulatory environment, there is a need for licensees to support several initiatives carefully designed to enhance market opportunities for all its licensees.
“Telecoms industry sustainability can only be guaranteed where all licensees ensure full and effective compliance with license conditions and other regulatory prescriptions. So, this forum provides an opportunity to discuss areas where some of our licensees are falling short of their license obligations, and how we can collectively improve on the present situation,” he said.
The EVC highlighted some of the key policies that have been articulated by the Federal Government, including the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS, 2020-2030); the Nigerian national Broadband Plan (NNBP, 2020-202), the Revised national Digital Identity Policy for SIM Registration, among others, and sought the licensees’ full and unalloyed commitment to ensure their successful implementation.
The NCC CEO said, as the regulator, the NCC provides the enabling environment for healthy competition in the industry.
Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management, NCC, Adeleke Adewolu, who supported Danbatta’s view on the need for strict compliance with telecoms regulations by the licensees, said telecoms has continued to lead national economic growth through effective regulation and adherence to rules of engagement by the licensees.
Adewolu, however, identified three key factors driving the sector’s performance to include a stable policy environment engendered by various digital economy policies; a consistent tradition of firm, fair, forthright, transparent and developmental regulatory oversight provided by the NCC; as well as long-term infrastructure investment and service commitments of telecoms licensees.
“The NCC has, therefore, organised this forum to enable us to strengthen collaboration along these three lines, to enable our valued stakeholders to give us feedback on ongoing initiatives and to enable you to seek clarifications on issues of concern,” Adewolu told the forum.
In his remarks, Director, Licensing and Authorisation, NCC, Mohammed Babajika, said while the Commission is fully aware and committed to discharging its mandate, especially in facilitating a conducive telecoms environment and guiding the industry to sustain the achievement already recorded in the industry, these can only be possible with the cooperation and support of the licensees.