The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), on Tuesday, insisted that service providers must comply with the commission’s consumer complaints policy for effective service delivery, even as it gave reasons for revising complaints categories and service level agreements.
The disclosure was made in a press statement that was signed by Dr Ikechukwu Adinde, NCC’s Director of Public Affairs. In the statement, it was explained that the NCC carried out a revision of the framework for resolving consumer complaints, in a bid to achieve greater effectiveness sector. The revision is also expected to strengthen the protection of telecoms consumers and other stakeholders.
The statement also noted that the framework was tagged Complaints Categories and Service Level Agreements (CC/SLA), and was revised by the Commission in November 2019 at a programme attended by representatives of telecoms operators, consumers, and other rights advocacy groups in the country.
The press statement also quoted Prof. Umar Danbatta, NCC’s Executive Vice Chairman, to have said:
“The 2019 review of the CC/SLA, in collaboration with operators and other stakeholders, was essentially to strengthen effective and prompt resolutions of consumer’s complaints by reviewing the timelines, broaden and streamline complaint categories and establishing applicable sanctions on operators that fail to meet the timelines stated for resolving issues related to the services delivery to their consumers.”
Key takeaways from the reviewed CC/SLA
- When a telecom subscriber experiences fluctuation in service, the subscriber shall be contacted by the service provider within four hours of reporting the incident.
- The disruption shall be restored within 72 hourS.
- If the matter is escalated to the commission, the consumer is expected to receive feedback within two hours.
- NCC will ensure the issue is resolved within 48 hours.
- Additionally, the subscriber shall be offered an apology and the expiry date of his data bundle shall be extended by the number of days the disruption lasted.
- Billing complaints by consumers would be resolved within 24 hours while compensation would be paid where necessary.
- Service providers are also mandated to redeem incentives won by customers promptly.
Meanwhile, the NCC has agreed with stakeholders that whenever a subscriber is unable to connect to call centre or service provider helpline, the matter shall be treated by the service provider within 4 hours of receiving the report.
On matters concerning faulty terminals such as defective devices that stifle a subscriber’s ability to use phones, modems, routers, and related devices appropriately, the NCC said that such issues shall be resolved based on terms and conditions for all devices.
Matters relating to Base Transceiver Stations (BTS), such as problems arising from installation and location of base stations, masts or towers, shall be resolved by the concerned operator(s) within the 48 hours, as stated in the revised CC/SLA.
Note that that the CC/SLA document, which is available on the Commission’s website, contains 17 broad categories and about 90 sub-categories. All stakeholders, particularly telecom consumers, were advised to study the document in order to understand their rights and privileges.