The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has banned product promotions by the country’s four GSM operators — Celtel, Glo Mobile, M-Tel and MTN — in light of the gradual decay in services. Ernest Ndukwe, Vice-Chairman of the NCC, said that until ‘very strong and reliable’ netwroks were in place, no promotions would be allowed, and blamed the inefficiencies in the telecoms sector in part on the government’s lack of economic will to implement the plan that incumbent telco Nigeria Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) submitted to it in 2002. ‘NITEL submitted a plan to allow for a long-distance infrastructure, but it was rejected by the Federal Government, and Nigeria is suffering today partly because of that decision… NITEL has been in a state of coma and needs resuscitation,’ said Ndukwe. An official of Celtel said that an investment of USD15 billion would be required to sort out the problems in Nigeria’s cellular infrastructure.
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