Public Inquiry: We're dedicated to transparency, inclusivity, says NCC boss

Dr. Aminu Maida

By Williams Ago

The Executive Vice-Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Aminu Maida, has expressed determination of the country's main telecommunications regulatory body in upholding transparency in handling the affairs of the industry.

Dr. Maida stated this at the Conference Hall, NCC headquarters, Abuja, at the commencement of a public inquiry on three regulatory instruments held on Tuesday May 21, 2024.

According to him, "The public inquiry we are conducting today is a testament to the Commission’s dedication to transparency and inclusivity ensuring that the voices of all stakeholders are heard and considered.”

Dr. Maida revealed that the regulatory instruments play a vital role in shaping the communications landscape, adding that "it is essential that we visit and refine them to address emerging challenges, trends and opportunities.

"The instruments that we considered during the course of this public inquiry are vital in ensuring the communications sector meets the demand of the ever-evolving digital age," he emphasized.

He explained further that the first Regulatory instrument in NCC's agenda today is Telecommunications Networks Interconnect Regulations, pointing out that, "as we all know, interconnection plays a vital role in enabling seamless communication between two different networks, and facilitating the growth of the communication industry in Nigeria. 

"This review is crucial to keep pace with technological advancement, foster competition, protect consumer interest, align with international standards and improve regulatory efficiency in the industry.

"The second instrument to be reviewed is Guidelines on Procedure for Granting Approval to Disconnect Telecommunications Operators. 

"As the industry continues to evolve in the main instances where disconnection of operators becomes necessary, this guidelines lay out the procedural framework through which such approvals are granted, ensuring that they are carried out in a transparent and accountable manner.

"Lastly, we will be reviewing the guidelines for Dispute Resolution. Disputes are an inevitable part of any industry. 

"In fact, it is indisputable in any transaction and having a robust framework to resolve them is crucial, and these guidelines aim to provide a clear and transparent mechanism for resolving conflicts within the communications sector promoting timely resolutions and ensuring that stakeholders are treated fairly.

"As disputes arise, we must evaluate and improve these guidelines to ensure they remain effective in resolving conflicts and promoting a stable telecommunications ecosystem,” he stated.

Earlier in her remarks, the Acting Head, Legal and Regulatory Services of NCC, Mrs. Chizua Whyte, explained that the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 empowers the Commission to develop and amend regulatory instruments.

She therefore alerted the stakeholders that their input will be crucial in refining these regulations to address the sector's evolving challenges.

While commending the collaboration between the NCC and stakeholders, which has driven significant advancement and capable of propelling the sector forward, Mrs. Whyte said, "this Public Inquiry underscores our commitment to regulatory excellence and to building a robust communications sector that supports the Nigerian economy. 

"We value your contributions and look forward to shaping a strong, dynamic industry together," she stressed.

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