The NCC has opened a public hearing to legalize the interception of phone calls in Nigeria to improve the security of the nation.
It stated that it’s now paramount for the Federal Government to protect Nigerians through the interception of mobile communications that are harmful and infringe on the rights of Nigerians.
Dr. Eugene Juwah, who is the Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, argued that the regulations are designed to protect the citizens considering the high level of insecurity in the country.
Participants at the forum refuted against certain provisions of the proposed law.. Expressing their fears on how the system designed to protect Nigerians could infringe on the fundamental rights of the citizens as those in charge of the communications could abuse their power and compromise privileged information for selfish purposes.
Juwah responded saying, international best practices will be strictly followed by the people charged with managing the intercepted communications.
He added, “The draft Lawful Interception aims to provide a legal and regulatory framework for the lawful interception of communications in Nigeria as well as the collection and disclosure of intercepted communications.
“In the same vein, it also specifies the nature and types of communications to be intercepted, penalties for non-compliance and measures to safeguard the privacy of citizens as contained and guaranteed under the Nigerian constitution.
“The regulations shall complement the Act and the respective license issued by the Commission and will state the obligations of law enforcement agencies and operators in connection with the interception of communications.
“The Commission is certain that there regulations will provide the guiding standards and principles for an effective regime on lawful interception of communications and licensing in the Nigerian telecommunications industry.”