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26.02.2007 General News

NCA to get tough on service providers

By DAILYEXPRESS-Shaibu Abubakar

The National Communications Authority (NCA) has warned telecommunication service providers that it will no longer tolerate acts of deceit and shortchanging of their clients.

Acting NCA Director General Major (Rtd) J. R. K. Tandoh says the warning is in line with the Authority's policy direction aimed at protecting consumers and ensuring better services from service providers in the telecommunications industry.

Referring to the country's Telecommunications Policy of 2005, the NCA says it has declared some basic consumer rights which must be adhered to in all dealings with consumers. These include the right to be informed, the right to safety and the right to be heard.

Major Tandoh told a Consumers' Assembly in Accra that “the right to be informed is non-negotiable and this implores providers to factually and comprehensively inform consumers about products or services devoid of falsehood, deceit, half truth, misleading information and advertisement... it amounts to a breach of consumer's right not to disclose every information pertaining to a product, service and even worse, to deliberately mislead him/her.”

He added that the right to safety is aimed at protecting consumers against marketing of sub-standard goods and services, adding, “the NCA frowns at such unethical conduct and is determined to ensure that adequate sanctions are imposed on culprits.”

According to him, the NCA is poised to make sure that aggrieved consumers have an avenue to seek redress. Special Complaint Forms have been made available for the public to lodge direct complaints with the NCA.

The consumers' assembly which formed part of activities to mark the 10th Anniversary of the NCA brought together the various telecom service providers in the country including Kasapa, Tigo, Areeba, Westel, Ghana Telecom and Onetouch. It served as a platform for consumers to interact with service providers and to ask relevant questions bordering on their various services.