NCC Allays Workers’ Fear In Etisalat


BY SEGUN ADEBAYO, ABUJA – As uncertainties over the fate of workers in Etisalat Nigeria continue to loom, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) on Tuesday declared that there was no cause for alarm, as the company would not collapse.

Giving this assurance during the 80th edition of Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP) that took place at the Yar’Adua Centre Abuja, the Executive Vice Chairman of the Commission, Professor Umar Danbatta, noted that the NCC never envisage Etisalat Nigeria would encounter stormy waters.

Represented at the event by Mr. Sunday Dare, the NCC boss said the commission, with the Central Bank of Nigeria, has waded into the matter in a bid to save jobs and interest of 21 million subscribers.

According to the NCC boss, “This year 2017 is a year of the consumer. We never anticipated the challenge Etisalat is currently facing and because of the lives of the 21 million consumers at stake, NCC and the CBN came in to intervene.

“As I speak, Etisalat is still running, despite the proposed plan to change the name. In spite of the challenges, we have kept it running for the sake of the consumers. I can assure you that no single staff of Etisalat has been fired, we will make sure all of them are protected and the services not disrupted.”

Prof Danbatta said the NCC views TCP as an opportunity to celebrate consumers of the Nigerian telecom industry in 2017 in line with the 8-point agenda of is administration.

“We are, however, grateful to consumers for responding positively to the telecommunications revolution. It is really the investment of the consumer through patronage of services that has encouraged build out and supported services provision. There is need to celebrate and recognize the consumer as the Boss of the industry and as Boss he who pays the piper dictates the tune.

“The Commission has taken steps to ensure that the telecommunications sector remain vibrant and has carried out its regulatory functions to ensure that the companies operating in the industry are healthy. Where necessary, NCC has made interventions to prevent disruptions to consumer experience,” he explained.

Also speaking, the Director, Consumer Care at Etisalat, Mr. Plato Syrimis, debunked fear over job losses, stressing that a change of name would destroy the reputation of the company’s operation and service delivery.

He insisted that no consumer would lose his line, adding, “Don’t expect any dare consequences because of the proposed change of name. The truth is that Etisalat has been operating from the Middle East shareholder until it pulled out of Nigeria two weeks ago.

“We have been operating and still running. That will not affect our services. It is unfortunate that this happened, but it will not affect the market, which had been in operation for many years.

“Airtel changed name six times and that did not make it lose its market; that is what is expected to happen in Etisalat. It is only the brand name that is going to change, all our services, innovations, staff are not going to be lost. You are not going to wake up one day and lose your line.

‘‘What is happening for the past 24 hours is not going to affect Etisalat services, what happened two weeks ago is only going to affect the brand name, that is what is likely to change, if it does change. The name on the door will change, but the services, innovation, customer focus, customer services will always be there.”

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