Posted by News Express | 25 January 2013 | 3,487 times
If you’re one of those worried by the high cost of sending text messages, rejoice, for your prayer for reduced costs has been answered. The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has directed that effective February 5, 2013, the new price cap is N4.00 per Short Message Service (SMS) across networks.
This represents a hefty cut from the present price of upwards of N15 per SMS for off-net and N5 per SMS for on-net text messages.
The price reduction directive was communicated to the operators since January 3 but only disclosed to the public yesterday.
Director, Legal and Regulatory Services of NCC, Ms. Josephine Amuwa, who signed the directive, explained that the commission would not place a price cap on international SMS at this time.
She said the commission arrived at the new price cap after due considerations of the submissions made by the operators at various consultative meetings.
Her words: “Having evaluated and analysed SMS traffic information provided by the operators, the commission noted that there was a general recognition that the cost of SMS is too high, especially in view of the interconnection rate of N1.02 for SMS as determined by the commission in 2009,”Amuwa said.
Telecoms operators had proposed a price cap ranging between N5-10 per message for off-net SMS, and had urged the commission not to set a price cap for international SMS due to the fact that interconnect rates for international SMS were outside their control as it is terminated through international carrier service providers in various jurisdictions.
Amuwa said “based on these considerations, and in the interest of striking a balance between sustaining operator’s profitability and ensuring consumer satisfaction, and also in accordance with the powers conferred on the commission under Sections 4 and Chapter V11 of the Nigerian Communications Act (NCA), 2003, the commission took its decision in the interest of subscribers and the operators.”
NCC informed operators that it would monitor their compliance with the directive, warning that failure to comply would attract penalty as provided by Section 111 of the NCA 2003.
•Photo: NCC Executive Vice Chairman, Dr. Eugene Juwah.
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