Telecos Condemn NCAA’s Threat to Demolish 7,000 Telecoms Masts

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Gbenga Adebayo
Chairman of the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Gbenga Adebayo

Emma Okonji

Telecommunications operators (Telcos) have raised the alarm over threat to demolish about 7,000 telecoms masts across the country by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), warning that the action will create challenges for the telecoms sector.

The operators declared that any telecoms site brought down illegally and without due consultation would not be rebuilt, adding that the consequences would be felt by all.

Chairman of the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Mr. Gbenga Adebayo, who gave the warning, described the move as another way to impose unwarranted taxes on the sector, which he said was already over- burdened with multiple taxations.

Adebayo who spoke at the Vanguard Economic Forum in Lagos yesterday, said the sector had become subject of attack from every angle and that the country has forgotten that telecoms still remain infrastructure because other sectors, including aviation, banking, health, transport rely on Information and Communications Technology (ICT) to drive their operations.

He said when attacked, the economy and the people would feel the impact negatively.

The ALTON chairman also carpeted the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for faulting SIM registration done by Mobile Network Operators (MNOs).

Adebayo said NCC would still need to do more explanations because “operators duly followed the procedures, standards and protocols handed to the operators at the commencement of the exercise some eight years back.”