Abuja – An official of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has said that multiple taxation and vandalism of telecommunications infrastructure are major challenges to the growth of the industry.
Mr Tony Ojobo, the Director of Public Affairs, NCC, made the statement in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Thursday.
Ojobo appealed to community leaders to advise their people against destroying telecomm infrastructure to ensure quality services, while NCC made efforts to tackle the challenges.
“As it is right now, the Critical Infrastructure Bill that was presented before the National Assembly has not been passed into law.
“We hope that the bill, when passed and endorsed by the government, would address some of these issues,’’ he said.
He, however, said it was the responsibility of every telecomm company to guard its facility against vandalism.[pro_ad_display_adzone id=”70560″]
The NCC spokesman also said multiple taxation was a major challenge to service providers, adding: “There is no approval for now on new base stations in some states in the last five years.’’
He blamed the increase in multiple taxation on the lack of cooperation by host communities, who blackmailed telecomm companies by demanding for settlements for siting telecomm infrastructure.
“At the state level, the communities and the state government would require that the telecom companies pay before they can install any new infrastructure.
“The commission has therefore engaged in different meetings with government and other stakeholders for right of way,’’ he said.
He said the commission was trying to address the issues that undermined the quality of service provided by the telecommunications operators.
Ojobo, however, said that some of the issues that were critical to the improvement of service delivery “are beyond the mandate of NCC but within the mandate of the Federal Government.’’
He, however, acknowledged that the current infrastructure available across the country was barely enough to cope with the rising number of telecomm subscribers. (NAN)