The National Association of Telecoms Subscribers (NATCOMS) has warned that it would go to any length to seek redress, if network operators in Nigeria fail to compensate subscribers for poor service quality.
The fresh threat came up, just as MTN Ghana announced that it would begin compensation of telecoms subscribers in Ghana for poor service quality.
NATCOMS’ President, Mr. Deolu Ogunbanjo, had earlier called on all telecoms operating companies in Nigeria to compensate Nigerian subscribers to the tune of N595 billion, covering all the 119 million subscribers across all networks, for various inconveniences they had suffered over poor service quality in the last 12 years.
NATCOMS, in a protest letter, demanded the payment of N5, 000 to each telecoms subscriber, as compensation to the 119 million subscribers, totaling N595 billion.
The letter, dated August 2, 2013, was addressed to the Association of Licensed Telecoms Companies of Nigeria (ALTON), the umbrella body of all telecoms operating companies in the country and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Eugene Juwah, was also copied in the protest letter.
“Since the letter was written, we have not gotten any response and now Ghana, a neighboring country is making preparations to pay its subscribers for the same thing we are asking in Nigeria, and our operators are not ready to listen to us,” Ogunbanjo told THISDAY.
Modern Ghana Newspapers quoted the Chief Executive Officer of MTN Ghana, Mr. Serame Taukobong, as saying that “MTN is making plans to compensate subscribers affected by recent network disruptions.”
An estimated 15% of MTN Ghana’s subscribers in Accra have been experiencing signal interruptions for the last couple of weeks, and the company attributed the outage to an extensive ongoing modernization and transformation of its systems.
According to MTN Ghana, “During the process of modernization, the network interface linked connection on the switch experienced intermittent errors resulting in the links failing. As a result, voice and data service delivery were affected, which made it difficult for subscribers to make and receive calls, as well as data and SMS.”
The company reportedly faced a fine by Ghana’s telecoms regulator, the National Communication Authority (NCA) if it failed to submit a compensation plan.
Ogunbanjo warned that after 21 days, it would seek legal redress, if the Nigerian telecoms operators still refused to compensate subscribers.
He added: “Nigerian subscribers have exercised total loyalty to telecoms operators in the past 12 years, and they have passed through stormy weather, and through the operators’ thick and thin experiences, yet they stood by them, even in the face of poor service quality. They therefore deserve adequate compensation.”