NCC Fines Innjoo N4m for Selling Non-Type Approved Mobile Phones


Emma Okonji

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), on Tuesday raided the office of InnJoo mobile phone maker in Lagos for selling unauthorised mobile phones to the public.

NCC had earlier warned the company to desist from such sales or risk sanctions.
During the surprise raid at the companies office in Lagos, NCC slammed Innjoo a fine of N4 million for violating its orders and the company paid the money in cash on the spot.

The Head of Enforcement at NCC, Salisu Abdu, who made the disclosure while addressing Journalists in Lagos shortly after the payment of the fine, said the sanction had been suspended following the payment.

He said the telecoms regulatory authority had in August, 2015 carried out an enforcement action against Innjoo and discovered that the company was selling devices not approved by NCC.

“As a result of the enforcement action, a fine of N4 million was imposed on them and their office was sealed. We raided Innjoo office in Lagos and we engaged with them, and they have paid the fine, which they had refused to pay initially,” Abdu said.

“When we got to their office, we were told they had not received a notice  of sanction. Honestly, a letter was sent to a lawyer representing Innjoo technology limited. So when we gave them a copy of the letter of sanction today, they immediately complied. They have paid the fine of N4 million and the sanction has been suspended. This is a warning to other phone manufacturers to get their devices type approved by NCC. This is an opportunity for them to get necessary type- approval, because it is an offense to sell devices not type approved by NCC,” Abdu added.

Using non type approved mobile handsets, according to him, would hamper network quality, warning that any equipment manufacturer found selling unauthorised mobile handsets, would be fined.

“We will sanitise the industry. It is an offence to sell unauthorised handsets because it hinders quality of network. Every device entering the market must be compatible with our network. We will go after any dealer who fails to get approval from NCC before selling mobile devices to the country. The enforcement will continue. NCC will go after every dealer found selling such handsets. It is against section 131, 132, 133 of the NCC act,” Abdu said.

He explained that the NCC is empowered by the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 to establish and enforce standards for telecommunications equipment in operation in the country to ensure that they operate seamlessly and safely within the Nigerian telecommunications environment.

All equipment manufacturers, vendors and operators, including customer devices such as mobile phones and wireless adapters, he added  must therefore ensure that their equipment conform to the applicable standards as mandated by the Commission before bringing them into Nigeria.
To ensure maximum interoperability and affordability for consumers, the Type Approval standards set by the NCC, he said are based on international standards.