The Senate on Tuesday, denied reports in some national dailies alleging that it gave its nod to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), and telecommunication service providers to increase the data tariff which was suspended following public outcry.
A prominent Online Newspaper had reported that the Senate Committee on Communications on Tuesday granted approval to the proposed data price hike by the NCC, saying that the commission has acted in national interest on the issue.
The Newspaper quoted Senator Solomon Adeola Olamilekan (Lagos West), who spoke on behalf of the committee members, as saying that the NCC had taken some commendable steps to sanitize the telecom industry and the data price hike was one of them.
Olamikan, who is the vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Communications, was alleged to have said:
“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. They have acted in national interests and Nigerians see NCC as being on their side.”
However, Vanguard newspaper reports that Chief Kayode Odunaro, the Media Adviser to the Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Communications, Senator Olamikan, said there is no truth in the story as the opposite is the case.
The statement read: “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.”
“Senator Adeola while commending the NCC for its achievements in recent times stated that the action it took in suspending the proposed data hike following public outcry was in the national and peoples’ interest stressing that their prompt responses to Senate inquiries on the matter and other related issues and a promise to undertake further scientific study on the data hike issue was commendable.”
“As can be seen from the body of the story, nowhere did the senator ‘okays’ the regulatory agency’s recommended “price floor” which was the issue that gave rise to the proposed data price hike that has since been suspended.”