Telecom subscribers must know their rights — NCA
Director of Consumer Affairs for the National Communication Authority (NCA), Nana Dufie Badu, has said customers of the various telecommunication companies must take advantage of the Electronic Communications Act (2008), which offers them protection against any unfair practices.
“If we are giving licenses to our mobile network providers, we make sure that there are clauses inside the license to ensure that the consumers are protected by way of information, by way of even complaining to the network or service provider,” she said.
One concern that has been raised by consumers is the fact that the laws just exist in theory but are not applied.
But Ms. Badu refuted this argument, saying the laws have been very effective and they have many advantages for consumers.
“The laws are very effective, other than that, service providers will not feel obliged to let you know how much you have spent in terms of credit and all that.
Under the laws, you are able to know that as a consumer, there are certain terms and conditions that you deserve, and you should even know before you sign unto a product. So, I think the laws are very adequate for protecting consumers in Ghana,” she said.
Ms. Badu was speaking at the Consumer Right Day celebration held in Accra which was themed: “know your telecoms right”.
The event was held to create public awareness concerning how to deal with mobile fraudsters, and the resolution of disputes between subscribers, licensed operators and other entities in accordance with processes stipulated by the law.
Commenting on the event, Ms. Badu stated that focus will now be extended to the informal sector to seal the gap of ignorance when it comes to their rights in the telecommunication industry.
“We decided to come to Tema station today because we believe that the people within the market space and the people in the informal sector have a bit of a gap in knowing their rights as consumers. That is why we have come here to draw people and educate them,” she said.
She further added that stickers with the contact of the NCA have been made available to the public and they can call to report any problem they experience if their service providers are not available.
NCA is an institution with the authority to assign, allocate and regulate the use of frequencies in conformity with policies and develops strategies for the communications industry.
Since last year the authority has being doing a monthly consumer outreach trying to build awareness and create some sort of information for the consumer to know about the NCA and also know their right as Ghanaians when it comes to the Electronic Communications Act.
The institution is currently engaged in the Digital Terrestrial Switchover Project, sim card identification, mobile number portability, broadband wireless access and the decentralisation agenda, to bring its services closer to Ghanaians throughout the country.