Subscribers association wants NCC to intervene on interconnect debt logjam
The National Association of Telecommunications Subscribers (NATCOMS) has called on the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to ensure that operators pay their interconnect debts.
The National President of NATCOMS, Chief Deolu Ogunbanjo made the call in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Lagos.
Interconnect debt arises when an operator fails to settle the cost of termination of service rendered to it by another operator in the industry.
Ogunbanjo said that non settlement of interconnect debts among service providers was part of the cause of poor service rendered in the industry.
He said that the issue of interconnect debt had been in the Industry for years, hence, the telecommunications regulator should ensure compliance to payment.
According to him, the debt clearing house should also see to it that an operator pays, once it shows that the operator is owing.
”Interconnect debt might also stifle some of the operators, because the smaller ones may not be able to expand as they wish, particularly in infrastructure.
”Since they are not paying each other, there will be no funds for expansion and operators will not be able to bring in quality equipment that are needed for signals from their base stations.
”Investment is slowed down for quality of service to be enhanced, so they won’t have the money to invest in infrastructure.
”Once that is established, it means that subscribers do not get good quality service that they are yearning for and operators owe subscribers quality service, which is currently not there.
”So, NCC should ensure that interconnect debts are paid and sanction any operator that refuses to pay,” he said.
NAN reports that NCC had given order to permit the disconnection of indebted operators from other operators’ networks.
The regulatory body also assured the general public that none of the over 160 million telecommunications subscribers would be disconnected or suffer service disruptions as a result of the order. NAN