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MTN Nigeria tops telecoms consumers’ complaints chart

MTN Nigeria tops telecoms consumers’ complaints chart

Grievances from MTN Nigeria subscribers topped number of  consumers complaints among the Big Four mobile operators in Nigeria last year, statistics released by the telecoms regulator have shown.

According to the Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC) Consumer Complaints Report Q4 2017 obtained by Technology Times,  MTN Nigeria, the largest mobile operator by subscribers base accounted for 52 percent of the total 17,247 complaints from subscribers in Nigeria. Globacom came second with  20percent while Airtel Nigeria  and 9mobile accounted for 17 and 11 percent respectively.

According to the February 2018 operator data from  the telecoms regulator ,  MTN Nigeria in a comfortable lead by subscriber numbers with over 53.4 million active lines while Airtel has 38,326,579 subscribers. Globacom has 38,228,018 subscribers and 9mobile finished with 16,867,579.

Ikeja Computer Village in Lagos, Nigeria
A mobile phone user in Ikeja Computer Village Lagos, Nigeria

The consumer complaints report also reveals that billing issues accounted for the highest number of complaints received during the quarter, that is 51.1%, while Value Added Services (VAS) and Call Setup complaints accounted for the second and third highest number of complaints received by the Commission with 14.6% and 8.4% respectively.

NCC says billing-related complaints include the following: deductions from activations of unsolicited Valve Added Service (VAS) and telecoms promotions and products; over deduction (inaccurate charges); charges for unauthorized services; charges for unsuccessful calls; charges for undelivered SMS; inability to change tariff plan; virtual top-up deducted but not received; Charges for Caller Ring Back Tune not downloaded, among others.

According to NCC, number of complaints in Q4 decreased to 17,247 from 18,711 in Q3, which the the telecoms regulator say “can largely be attributed to the rise in the level of consumer awareness and activation of Do-Not-Disturb (DND) services on their lines.”

According to NCC, “this increase can be attributed to the rise in the number of consumers that are getting aware of the Commissions’ complaints channels i.e. 622 toll free line, Consumer Web Portal, various social media handles – Twitter, Facebook, including written complaints from customers.”

NCC had in 2016, mandated Mobile Network Operators to set aside short code 2442 for Do-Not-Disturb (DND) Services on their networks. The DND Service affords telecoms subscribers with the opportunity to manage unsolicited telemarketing messages on their lines.

The telecoms watchdog says that at end of Q4 2017 (December 31, 2017), about 8.2 million subscribers have activated the DND Service on their lines.

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Kolade Akinola Technology Journalist at Technology Times Mobile: + 234 (0) 807 401 6027