UPDATE: The Senate hasn’t approved the data price hike by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC). The Vice Chairman of the Senate Committee on Communications, Senator Solomon Adeola made this known in a publication on his personal website:
Our attention has been drawn to a publication with the misleading title “Senate Okays Data Price Hike, says NCC Acted in national Interest” in a national daily insinuating that the Senate through its Committee on Communications sanctioned data price increase by telecommunications service providers during an oversight visit to the Nigerian Communication Commission.
There is no iota of truth in the misleading title as the contrary is the case from what the Vice chairman of the Committee Senator Solomon Adeola said in his presentation during the briefing by NCC Executive Vice Chairman, Professor Umaru Dambatta.
The original post continues below.
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If you remember, just two weeks ago in November, the Nigerian Senate mandated a halt of the proposed hike, on the basis that it was “not a wise move on the part of the Nigerian Communications Commission”. This moved cause some to question the Nigerian Senate’s ability to “order” the Nigerian Communication Commission to halt anything.
However, in a rather dramatic turn of events, the Nigerian Senate appears to have changed its stance. It turns out that the Senate Committee on Communications visited the NCC headquarters in Abuja on Tuesday.
According to the Daily Trust, speaking on behalf of the committee yesterday was Senator Solomon Olamilekan Adeola (Lagos West), who commended the steps the NCC had taken so far to “sanitise the telecom industry”.
“Each time we invited the leadership of the agency to the National Assembly, they honoured our invitation and responded to our inquiries, particularly during the MTN issue, and of recent the data price floor”, said Olamilekan, “They have acted in national interests and Nigerians see NCC as being on their side”.
The move might come as a bit of a shock, seeing as it is barely a week since the committee met with the NCC and telcos; a meeting which resulted in a resolution to keep things in check until the NCC was able to conduct an ‘extensive’ research to come up with a price floor that would be acceptable to Nigerians.
It is not clear if enough ‘extensive’ research could have been done in the space of one week to justify the change in stance. Nigerians can however expect data prices to go up very soon.