African Reserves

Congolese regulator will stifle the Nigerian telecoms market | The Guardian Nigeria News


The CONGO-Brazzaville Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (CTRA) has declared its readiness to take advantage of the success of the Nigerian telecommunications market.

This was brought to light when a delegation from the Central African nation made a scheduled visit to the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC), primarily to study the latter’s policies, practices and programs that have made it an authority on the subject. model telecommunications regulation on the continent and beyond.

The Congolese team, led by CTRA Network Director Benjamin Mouandza, spent three days at NCC Headquarters in Abuja, where they were exposed to key NCC results-oriented regulatory activities, frameworks, programs and policies. , with the aim of exploring how such operational frameworks might be adapted by the African nation known for its immense rainforest reserves.

In the letter to the Executive Vice President (EVC) of NCC, Professor Umar Danbatta, the conglomerate regulator indicated its interest in better understanding three areas of NCC’s regulatory activities, namely the management of issues associated with quality of service. (QoS), SIM Boxing and Call Masking, as well as the certification process for telecommunications equipment.

In response to the request, Danbatta agreed to host the team and further led the relevant departments of NCC, including Special Functions (SD); Technical standards and network integrity (TSNI); and the Compliance and Enforcement Oversight (CME) directorates to interact with the team to provide the necessary information sharing that may be of use to the Congolese counterpart.

Speaking to the CTRA team, NCC Director, TSNI, Bako Wakil, spoke about the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) instituted by the NCC on quality of service and how these KPIs are measured and monitored. by the Commission to ensure better service delivery to the growing countries of Nigeria. telecommunications consumers. He said it has also helped improve the quality of experience (QoE) for consumers.

Regarding the type approval process, Wakil said the Council has developed a rigorous process to ensure that telecommunications equipment, including terminals, manufactured to international standards and specifications are imported into the country.

The “NCC takes the type approval process like other processes seriously, as unapproved devices and equipment that are also not manufactured in accordance with international standards and specifications have negative implications for the quality of service delivery. network services, ”he said.

Wakil also spoke at length about call masking and highlighted the measures the NCC had in place to deal with the threat. He described call masking as “the practice of sending international calls to an operator but disguising the calls as if they were local by sending the calls over the local interconnect route with a local number in the plane. national dialing instead of the original international dialing number. “

In a related presentation to the visiting team on SIM Boxing Fraud and the NCC’s Efforts to Counter the Threat, NCC Director, CME Ephraim Nwokonneya spoke about the problems created by the fraudulent practice. SIM boxing, including the threat to national security, loss of revenue for service providers and the government.

Additionally, he argued the anti-competitive practices associated with such acts among licensees as well as the general economic implications so evident in lost revenue.

However, Nwokonneya has detailed the solutions to SIM Boxing fraud from a regulatory perspective.

He said regulators can deploy anti-SIM and call masking boxing solutions, be proactive and effective in monitoring and enforcement, working with industry and law enforcement, strengthening capacity building through training and skills training programs, as well as review of enforcement regulations and enabling legislation.

Commenting on the benefits of the visit, Mouandza of CTRA said the choice made by the Congolese regulator to visit NCC as part of a benchmarking tour was worth it. “We have come to understand how the Nigerian regulator has handled some important regulatory issues and issues in the country as it relates to telecommunications. During this visit, I can say that our goal has been achieved. The experience was very rich and we learned a lot. We would like to thank the EVC and its team for agreeing to welcome us. We are now in a better position to replicate some of the things we have learned about our home telecommunications market, ”he said.