The federal government has kicked against plans by telecommunication companies to increase charges on use unstructured supplementary service data (USSD) channels to access banking services.
Some telecoms network service providers had sent notified their subscribers of plans to charge extra on USSD with effect from October 21.
Some messages read thus: “Please note that from Oct 21, we will charge N4 per 20 seconds for USSD access to banking services. Thank you. ”
However reacting to the viral message, Isa Pantami, minister of communications, directed that the plan be stopped.
“The attention of the federal ministry of communications has been drawn to the viral text message allegedly sent by the Mobile Network Operator MTN Nigeria and other Mobile Operators notifying subscribers of a four naira (N4:00) charge per 20 seconds on USSD access to banking services from the 21st of October 2019,” he said in a statement, Uwa Suleiman, spokeswoman of the ministry, issued on his behalf.
“The office of the Honourable Minister of Communications Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami FNCS, FBCS, FllM is unaware of this development and has hereby directed the sector regulator, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) ensures the operator suspends such plans until the Honourable Minister is fully and properly briefed.”
More to follow…