The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has asked telecommunications service consumers in Nigeria to safeguard telecom infrastructure, located in their environment from thieves and vandals as complementary effort to law enforcement agencies.
The Commission made the call recently during a sensitization programme it organized at Wannune, Tarka Local Government Area of Benue State.
According to the NCC consumers have a major role to play in complementing efforts being put in place to ensure effective protection of telecommunications infrastructure to sustain and improve on the quality of service delivery by the service.
The Commission said subscribers and ultimate users of telecom services, have an obligation to do everything to protect telecoms infrastructure in their environment including; base transceiver stations (BTS), the underground fibre optic cable, as well as associated infrastructure.
The Director, Zonal Operations, NCC, Amina Shehu, in her address at the event, decried vandalism of telecom infrastructure in the country which often result in poor quality of service delivery to the end users.
“One of the major challenges to quality of service that operator provide to you, is vandalism of telecom infrastructure, such as Base Transceiver Stations, BTS. Other problems are theft, hostility from some host communities, which have continued to pose a major setback to the industry”, she said.
“Therefore, it is imperative for the public to regard telecom facilities as collectively-owned infrastructure that are crucial and essential for the provision of efficient and acceptable telecom services. The more reason these facilities need to be adequately protected,” she urged.
While imploring the indigenes of Tarka Local Government Area of Benue State to ensure that they protect telecom facilities in their community, Shehu, who was represented at the event by an Assistant Director, Zonal Operations, NCC, Abubakar Usman, further enjoined the consumers to always alert law enforcement agencies close to them once they suspect any act of vandalism, theft or other suspicious activities directed at telecom infrastructure.
She underscored the centrality of telecommunications sector to the economy noting that in the last 15 years, telecom has been a major contributor to the nation’s economic growth and development.
The Director Zonal Operations said the Commission will continue to collaborate with relevant agencies and keep sensitising the consumers on their role in ensuring the security of telecom infrastructure.
On the misinformation about Electromagnetic Frequency, EMF, radiation emanating from telecommunications infrastructure, she explained that it was not harmful according to studies conducted by the International Telecommunication Union, ITU, World Health Organisation, WHO, and the International Commission for Non-Ionising Radiation Protection, ICNIRP.
For his part, the Paramount Ruler of Wannune, Gandeorun Orokaa, who attended the event, thanked the Commission on behalf of the participants for bringing the sensitization programme to the Community to educate the consumers on sensitive consumer-related issues as well as correcting wrong notions and clarifying misconceptions.
He also called on the indigenes to support NCC in protecting telecoms infrastructure so as to ensure that quality of service improves in the areas.
The event ended with an audience session, where questions and answers were asked, and observations and recommendations were also made on many aspects of telecom services.
In attendance at the event were Local Government workers, Village Heads, Community leaders, Students, Women leaders, Staff of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC.