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Pantami to NCC: Resolve issues of illegal data deduction by Nov 10

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THE Minister of Communications, Isa Pantami has criticized the illegal deduction of data encountered by consumers of network providers in the country demanding a resolve on or before November 10, 2019.

Pantami had directed the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) in a statement issued by the ministry’s spokesperson Philomena Oshodin, to ensure, that the issue of illicit deduction of data is resolved within five days.

The statement, dated November 5 noted that data pricing in the country should be downwardly reviewed, while it authorised the NCC to sanction mobile network operators who indulge in the act.

Pantami ordered a clampdown on the Unstructured Supplementary Service Data deduction by network providers in the country, lamenting that the ministry was unaware that charges were procured for USSD transaction.

He enjoined the communication agency to ensure that the penetration and expansion of 3G and 4G are actualized in the country.

However, Pantami said the government is not oblivious of the issues mobile operators’ experience, especially in the area vandalism and issues of Right of Way (ROW) but the mission of the ministry is to protect the interest of customers and improve the economy of Nigeria through ICT.

“The main agenda of NCC is to protect the interest of customers and our priority is to protect Nigerians. It is our collective responsibility to make sure we give 100 per cent support to President to deliver his key mandate,” he said.

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However, the Cable, a United Kingdom-based organisation that deals with broadband technology, has ranked 230 countries with her average cost of purchasing one gigabyte of mobile data.

The report titled; Worldwide mobile data pricing: The cost of one gigabyte (IGB) of mobile data in 230 countries, garnered data from 6,318 mobile data plans in 230 countries between 23rd of October and 28th of November 2018.

This report has remained a worldwide mobile data pricing league table, showing different countries’ average cost of purchasing 1GB of mobile data, rated in dollars (USD).

Among the 230 countries are the first five countries in the order of her cost of purchasing data. The first is India-$0.26; Kyrgyzstan, the 2nd -$0.27; Kazakhstan the 3rd – $0.49; Ukraine, the 4th -$0.51 and Rwanda, the 5th- $0.56 respectively.

The report ranked Nigeria 44 amongst the 230 countries with an average of $2.22 cost of data pricing. However, Zimbabwe ranked the highest with $75.2 as her average cost of 1GB data pricing worldwide, making India the country the least on the rank, as at November 2018.

Also, ranking Nigeria’s place in Africa, Nigeria emerged in the 11th place among other African countries. The data showed the first 10 countries with her average cost of purchasing data with Rwanda taking the first place as the country with the least average cost of purchasing 1GB of mobile data of $0.56.

Following is Sudan at $0.68; DR Congo at $0.88; Egypt at $1.49; Ghana at $1.56; Morocco at $1.66; Western Sahara at $1.66; Cameroon at $1.71; Guinea at $1.94, Burundi at $2 and Nigeria taking the 11th place with an average data price of $2.22 respectively.

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