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Telecoms consumers decry 30 per cent service charge in Kogi


PHOTO: Financial Times

Telecommunications consumers in Kogi State have decried the 30 per cent charge on borrowed airtime. They accused the service providers in Nigeria of impoverishing them.

During the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC)-organised event tagged, Consumer Conversation, yesterday in Lokoja, the subscribers alleged that the service providers always tax them twice whenever they are offsetting their debt.

According to them, the telecommunications firms charge more than 30 per cent of their borrowing.

The consumers maintained that at the point of loading, they were being charged 15 per cent of the amount with a corresponding deduction during their next recharge.

The subscribers accused the commission of complicity, adding that their accounts were also being deducted for unsolicited applications, even as they lamented poor quality of service as well as other hidden charges.

The consumers were also bitter with the absence of representatives of the telecoms operators, whom they had wished to respond to their complaints.

Responding, the representative of the Head, Zonal Operation of the NCC, Ekisola Oladosu, noted that since consumers borrow airtime to solve a dire need, it was, therefore, within the purview of the operators to fix rate for such bargain since it could be taken for granted that all parties were conversant with the terms of the deal.

According to him, the service providers have their terms and conditions, adding that the consumers were at liberty to decide.

He, however, held that the operators do not have an authority to make deductions on recharges.

On poor services, the NCC official noted that a bulk of the challenges arise from electricity, vandalism, infrastructure deficit as well as substandard handsets.

He advised the consumers to reach the operators or commission via the 622 toll free line for other hitches.

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