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A LOOMING HIKE IN COSTS OF TELECOMMUNICATION SERVICES IN NIGERIA

May 7, 2022

This is “No Bullshitting,” and the topic is “A looming hike in costs of telecommunication services in Nigeria. Have you heard the latest news about the motherfuckers who run telecommunication companies in Nigeria? Have you heard that, rather than change their pervasive criminality and immorality against Nigerians, they are seeking to be paid more for their criminality? Have you heard that the motherfuckers are currently seeking approval from relevant Nigerian authorities, to increase their charges for their services. Can you believe shit like that. Well, I mean can Nigerians in Nigeria who feel the pain believe shit like that, meeeeeeeeeen?!!!

Oh yes, the crooks have been giving Nigerians the worst services in the world. And, they have been charging Nigerians more for those terrible services than the countries where good services exist! Telecommunication revolution started in Nigeria over 20 years ago. That’s twenty whole fucking years! And, rather than improve in tandem with the rest of the world, the services in Nigeria are getting worse by the day. My focus for now is just telephone services, which have unbelievably frustrated Nigerian users every fucking day for the past 20-and-odd years. There are gazillion problems, including drop-calls, inaudible and unclear conversations, “no network” and poor network connectivity; to mention just these three. The list goes on, and on, and on, meeeeeeeeeeen!!!

The telecommunication crooks have refused to give Nigerians value for their money in their services. Their sharp practices and irresponsibility have amounted to pure stealing, over the years. But, guess what, it is my no-bullshitting position that the telecom operators are not really the key problem of Nigerians in this matter. The operators are not nearly as criminal or as grievous as some corrupt Nigerian civil servants. I speak of the compromised crooks in government who have been aiding and abetting the criminality. Their job is to regulate the companies to serve the people well. Instead, they, obviously, receive bribes from them to look the other way while they rob Nigerians. Note my emphasis on the word, ‘obviously.’ If I wanted to be more “legally-correct,” I would use the word ‘apparently.’ But that’s more like, ‘it looks like’ so. I say, fuck the legality! I dare them, and I say that it is actually so. I allege that they take bribe. Let them sue me to court,  meeeeeeeeen!!!

As I ways say whenever I get so daring; something good would come out of such lawsuit. Even if my culprits can prove in court that they do not take bribe, that’s cool, too. Then, they would have to tell us, and try to justify, why the fuck they refuse to do their job. I can even take a wager that Nigeria Communications Commission, or whoever the fuck is in charge, will support the telecom operators this time, too. They will approve their pending move to increase charges on their services. They won’t give a fuck that the services have been terrible for over 20 years. Of course, NCC will approve the hike; they are likely to be bribed to do it.

The planned move by the telecom companies is absolutely criminal, as well as immoral! How dare those motherfuckers even suggest the hike, without first improving on the quality of their services, huh? Nigerians have the worst telecommunication services in the entire democratic world, and they pay much more than countries with better services. The services are getting worse by the day, rather than improving. The motherfuckers don’t even apologize for their diminishing service-quality, but they have the gull to seek to hike their prices. Nigerians should loudly kick against any approval of the hike by our authorities, meeeeeeen!!!

As I have said, I don’t blame the telecom crooks so much. I blame their fellow crooks in our compromised regulatory bodies who let them to get away with their criminality. I was in a conference in Nigeria just over a month or so back. I could hardly wait to pose some questions to the conveners. They were executives of Nigeria’s Federal Competition & Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC). I had no idea that they had expanded their wings, and changed the name from just “Consumer Protection Commission (CPC),” to FCCPC. From the answer that I received, it was clear that there is some kind of jurisdiction problem between FCCPC and Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC).  I did see the confusion coming, even as I formed my question. Similar confusion exists between various agencies of Nigerian government. The Road Safety Commission, the Police, and the Civil Defense Corp seem to be confused sometimes whose-job-is-what. For instance, there is the matter of who is it that issues driver’s licenses and vehicle particulars in Nigeria. There have been debates over that.

Anyway, I fired my barrage of questions at the FCCPC conference, four or five in one breath. And, cautious as they were, their answers exposed that such jurisdiction issue between FCCPC and NCC does exist. They said, in effect, that the FCCPC and NCC need to “harmonize” their operations. Meanwhile, they have kind-of conceded the jurisdiction to NCC, as they work on their “harmonization.” They, of course, agreed with all the bad names that I called the Telecom Operators, for giving Nigerians no value for their money on their services. They couldn’t possibly deny having been going through the telecom frustrations themselves. I was in that conference as “No Bullshitting,” and not as Harry Agina. So, you can imagine what names that I called the telecom dudes when the microphone got into my hands. The FCCPC dudes, and some ‘dudess,’ too, all agreed that I was right. Naturally, understandably, they wouldn’t dare to openly, boldly endorse my no-bullshitting choices of words.

But, they didn’t challenge me either. They totally agreed with me, so much that they didn’t even try to ask me to choose my words “properly.” In other words, they didn’t caution me to be hypocritically as nice as a typical politically-correct Nigerian would be. My point here, is that all Nigerians do hate what the telecommunication companies are doing to Nigerians in poor services, sharp practices, and exorbitant charges. Most Nigerians do want to curse the crooks out, too, just as “No Bullshitting” does. But, some can’t; they have to be nice. No wonder, when “No Bullshitting” (not Harry) spoke, the FCCPC dudes and ‘dudesses’ actually enjoyed it, I swear, meeeeeeeen!!!

I had to tell them my story of a whopping compensation that I once received from an American company in the US. The company only interrupted my phone service for about ten minutes, due to a computer error that said that I was owing my monthly bill. I complained, they found out the error, and gave me the compensation. I got one whole month service of local and international “long-distance” calls, free of charge, meeeen!!! The freebie was worth thousands of dollars, just for ten minute-interruption of my service. In Nigeria, everybody’s services are often cut off every so often, for days, or weeks sometimes. Also, everybody’s services are disrupted, distorted, and all other dis-functional mess, all year long. Not even apologies are offered to the people by the companies, not to speak of compensation. And, that’s from the year 2021 ‘til date. The obviously compromised NCC watches as it continues to grow worse by the day.

Sadly, Nigerians don’t even blink about the criminality anymore. It has been accepted as a norm; after all, “this is Nigeria.” That’s the common response by too many subservient, apathetic Nigerian people. I emphasize ‘too many’ to underscore that even one thousand Nigerians with such attitude, it would still be a-thousand-too-many. “This is Nigeria, where shit happens all the time, loads of flies always flock around the shit, and nobody gives a fuck anymore,” I always retort. Rather than furiously demand value for their money, too many Nigerians are quick to remind you that “this is Nigeria.” It is a apathetic way of saying that there’s nothing that anyone can do to stop the progressive degeneration of Nigeria. No body can do shit about the criminality of both the telecom companies and the agencies that are supposed to regulate them. Even more sad, is that the people’s representatives, the loot-makers who are called lawmakers, are obviously compromised, too. Otherwise, they have an oversight duty to clamp down on the compromised regulators to do their job.

Anyway, I specifically asked the FCCPC dudes and ‘dudesses’ a question. How come that it’s not in the FCCPC jurisdiction to penalize the telecommunication companies from the “Consumer Protection” angle? How many products and services are in more consumer-jurisdiction than telecom services and products, huh? That’s when they pacified me with a promise that they (FCCPC) are working on harmonizing with NCC on the jurisdiction matter. Meanwhile, the executives of NCC, who seem to have the upper hand in jurisdiction, are obviously compromised, I insist for the umpteenth time. And, I dare them to sue me to court for slander. If we achieve nothing else, they will have to explain to Nigerians their reason for allowing the telecom companies to get away with murder, literally.

I allege that they are most probably paid off by the companies to look the other way while they are cheating Nigerians. So, they should sue that I slander their reputation, since I don’t have a court conviction. Then, they would tell us why the telecom companies, some of them foreign, are getting away with murder in our country. There is a question for foreign telecom companies, too, such as the MTN. How come their services in their home-country, South Africa, are far better than what they give Nigerians? And, I can tell you the true answer right now. The South African regulators would not allow them to get away with their kind of irregularities in Nigerian, that’s why, meeeeeeeeeeen!!!

And finally, another pertinent question, which starts with an observation. Global technologies are generally uniform, or universal, basically; right? With some variations in some instances, of course, from one manufacturer to another. So, how come that telecom technologies work optimally in the USA, for example, but so poorly in Nigeria, huh? Why not the best brands for a whopping population of over 200 million people, huh, huh?? Again, “this is Nigeria,” the dumping ground, that’s why! They bring Nigeria the cheapest and less advanced versions of technologies. To make matters worse, the motherfucking operators, typically, most likely overload their system, or software. They load a system with the capacity of one million, for instance, with probably ten million subscribers.

Hence, the systems are slowed down, and they frequently break down, too. Why? Well, that ugly Nigerian word, ‘impunity,’ that’s why! They know that nobody is about to sanction them, so, they do what they want. The way that I look at it, the NCC is compromised, and the nation’s so-called lawmakers are compromised, too. It is the loot-makers job to hold a compromised NCC accountable, on behalf of the people that they are supposed to represent. So, ultimately, I hold the loot-makers responsible for the bullshitting in Nigeria’s telecommunication industry. And, I trust, that you do know, that I ain’t bullshitting ya, meeeeeeeeeeeen!!!

This is “No Bullshitting,” by Harry Agina.

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