NCC Lifts Sanction On MTN Nigeria

Mr Tony Ojobo, the Director, Public Affairs, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), said on Wednesday that the commission had lifted the sanction placed on MTN Nigeria since July 13, 2015.


Ojobo said in a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the regulatory sanctions were for 24 identified infractions.


It said that the lifting of the regulatory sanction was in no way related to the Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) card non-deactivation fine.

“This is to confirm that NCC has lifted the regulatory sanctions placed on MTN since July 13, 2015.

“The sanctions were for 24 identified infractions which are not in any way connected with the SIM card non-deactivation fine.

“These were a number of violations discovered by the Compliance Monitoring and Enforcement Team of the commission in June 2015.

“Consequent upon the inability of MTN to remedy the identified infractions, the commission invoked the sanction in its guidelines,’’ the statement quoted Ojobo as saying.


It said that the sanction meant the denial of regulatory services to the telecommunications company for failing to remedy the infractions in line with NCC’s regulations.


According to the statement, consequent upon the remediation of the 24 infractions by MTN, the regulatory body’s letter of March 14, 2016, informed the company of its decision to lift the regulatory sanction.


“It should be noted that this does not in any way extend to the fine for non-deactivation of SIM card case.

“The case of SIM card deactivation is an entirely different infraction, which is mutually exclusive to the 24 infractions now remedied.

“This has become necessary in view of the many enquiries being received from concerned stakeholders.
“This action is without prejudice to the matter which is presently in court. Please be guided accordingly,’’ it quoted Ojobo as saying.



CBN To Sanction Banks Over Hidden Charges

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) over the weekend disclosed it would penalise erring Deposit Money Banks (DMB) for fleecing bank customers with illegal charges.
Already, the bank said it has recovered about N6.2 billion of excess charges imposed on customers by banks in 2015.
A statement issued by the Director, Corporate Communications Department of CBN, Mua’zu Ibrahim, acknowledged the series of complaints from customers of DMBs alleging excessive and in some cases illegal charges by their respective banks.
He explained that the Revised Guide to Bank Charges issued by the apex bank clearly specifies allowable charges for all banking services, adding, “the CBN does not in any way condone the fleecing of bank customers under any guise.”
Ibrahim hinted that the bank was concerned about the rising number of complaints bordering on excessive bank charges, noting that in 2015 alone, the CBN investigated about 6,000 of such cases.
It said the apex bank would continue to enforce the revised guidelines on bank charges, stating that any customer who has been illegally charged should report to the Consumer Protection Department (CPD) of the CBN.
The statement read in part: “The Central Bank of Nigeria has received series of complaints from customers of Deposit Money Banks alleging excessive and in some cases illegal charges from their respective banks.
“It was in the quest to provide a strong voice to banks’ customers and moderate the arbitrary charges that the CBN in 2012, established its Consumer Protection Department.
“The CBN wishes to reiterate its resolve to continuously enforce the provision of the Revised Guide to Bank Charges and urges members of the public to report cases of infringement to enable it investigate and apply sanctions on any erring Deposit Money Bank.
“Bank customers are reminded to always forward there complaints to: Director, Consumer Protection Department;”

Credit: Sun

Nigeria To Reward Best Performing Civil Servants, Sanction Under Performers

The Head of Service of the Federation Winifred Oyo-Ita, on Wednesday said government had resolved to reward best performing civil servants and sanction under-performing ones, with a view to ensuring effective service delivery.

Mrs. Oyo-Ita said in a statement that the service would be enhanced to improve personnel structure and Performance Management System (PMS), with the introduction of reward for hard work as well as sanctions for poor performance.

The head of service said the present administration was committed to the future and welfare of workers, stressing that the recently inaugurated Federal Integrated Staff Housing (FISH) was a classic example of government’s commitment to the welfare of workers.

She said reforms aimed at ensuring financial accountability and effective service delivery in the civil service would be introduced.

The statement said the reforms would focus on value for money through capacity building and structured training programmes to equip civil servants with relevant skills to do their job diligently and efficiently.

Credit: PremiumTimes

Aero Contractors Gets Costly Sanction For Ladder Saga

Days after a Nigerian airliner, Aero Contractors Airlines, disembarked passengers from a plane with a ladder in Bauchi State, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) imposed an “applicable sanction” on the airliner in line with Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations (NCARs).

According to the NCAA, the sanction runs into millions of Naira.

A spokesman for the NCAA, Mr Sam Adurogboye, gave a hint about the sanction in a statement on Wednesday.

Credit: ChannelsTv

FCT To Sanction Owners Of Abandoned Structures

The Department of Development Control of the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has indicated plans to sanction developers of abandoned structures in the territory.


Mr Hamza Madaki, the Acting Director of the department, gave this indication at an interactive session with FCT indigenes and the media on Thursday in Abuja.


Madaki said that owners of such structures would soon be summoned and given a deadline within which to put their structures to use.


He said that the idea of abandoning structures was worrisome, considering the current challenges in the country.


“These abandoned structures are in two categories; those under construction and those already completed but not occupied for a long period of time.


“The first category has about 405 structures scattered across the territory, of which about 100 developers have already responded to our summons.


“For those that have been completed, we intend to summon their owners and give them a deadline to get them occupied.


“If they fail to comply, they will face appropriate sanction.’’


The director said that the reason for meeting with the traditional rulers was to ensure synergy, so that the spate of demolition of structures would be reduced.


“Our ultimate target is to reduce the spate of demolition of illegal structures in the FCT by frequently dialoguing with the grassroots and sensitising their leaders on the right steps to take.


“Though indigenes’ houses are usually excluded from demolition until they are properly resettled, they are not allowed to build houses and rent them out to tenants.’’


He said that the department would regularly engage the indigenous leaders of Abuja so as to minimise conflict and create harmony.


Responding on behalf of the traditional rulers, Mr Jacob Garki, the District Head of Garki, commended the director for convening the meeting.


He said that the traditional rulers should serve as a link between government and the people and gave an assurance that they would always cooperate with government.


“If there is a gap, peace might not be guaranteed.


“We, traditional rulers, are like messengers who represent both the government and the indigenes and we will continue to represent all interests.’’


He advised the department to always liaise with them before carrying out demolition, so as not to wrongfully demolish indigenous structures.




NCC To Sanction MTN, Airtel, Globacom Over Auto Data Service Migration

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) yesterday  said it would sanction MTN, Airtel and Globacom for defying its directive on automatic migration to Pay-As-You-Go data bundle.

The Commission made this known in its ‘2015 third quarter Compliance Monitoring and Enforcement Report’ obtained posted on its website.

NCC said it had continued to receive complaints from subscribers on automatic migration of data bundle package to Pay-As-You-Go Billing on depletion of their data bundle.

‘’Consequently and pursuant to section 53(1) of the NCC Act, 2003. The commission on 3rd August 2015 directed all mobile service operators to comply with the data bundle directions.

According to News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), NCC said “where a subscriber’s data bundle account is fully depleted before the due date, service providers should notify the subscriber via SMS, giving information regarding the tariff/ billing rate for automatic migration.

‘’That all service providers should henceforth stop auto-migration of subscriber’s data service to the Pay-As-You-Go (PAYG) account upon depletion of the data bundle account, except with the express consent and authorisation of the subscriber via SMS.’’

Credit: NationOnline

Ekiti Workers Resume Early To Avoid Sanction

Civil servants in Ekiti State yesterday rushed to offices to avoid being sanctioned for lateness.

Their action followed an unscheduled visit by Governor Ayo Fayose to the secretariat on Monday during which he apprehended over 30 workers for lateness.

The civil servants prostrated, knelt down, cried and begged the governor to be merciful, but he directed the Head of Service, Gbenga Faseluka, to begin disciplinary action against them.

Reporters monitored the resumption of workers at offices yesterday and found out that there was 100 per cent compliance with the 8am deadline.

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Iran Relaxes Jail Sanction For Men Who Can’t Pay Dowry

Hard up Iranian husbands will no longer face jail for failing to pay dowries that can reach hundreds of thousands of dollars, following passage of a new law, it was reported Wednesday.

But spouses who claim to be impecunious yet are then proven to have the means to pay can still look forward to prison.

In the Islamic republic, the families of brides-to-be negotiate fiercely to get the top amount of what is known as Mehrieh, payment in gold coin-like tokens known as bahar azadi (spring of freedom in Farsi).

There are even trendy ways of doing it. A family can ask for one coin for the total number of years in the date she was born, according to the Iranian calendar.

So the dowry of a 24-year-old woman born in 1370 (1991) would be 1,370 coins worth $367,000 (334,000 euros) at the current gold price.

Read More: ngrguardiannews

CBN To Sanction Banks For Forex Rule Violation

The Central Bank of Nigeria said Deposit Money Banks and Bureaux de Change that sell foreign exchange to importers of rice, toothpick, tomato paste and private jets, among others, into the country will be sanctioned.

The CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, stated this on Wednesday during a special media briefing held in Abuja to explain the rationale behind the new policy banning the sale of forex for the importation of some items.

The bank had on Tuesday issued a circular stopping the sales of foreign exchange to importers of 40 times.

Emefiele explained that the change in policy was in line with the government’s long held believe that Nigeria could not attain its true potential by importing everything.

Read More: Punch

Probe & Sanction PwC Over “Unprofessional Auditing”, Reps To Buhari

House of Representatives Committee on Public Accounts has urged the incoming government of President-elect Muhammadu Buhari and regulators of the accounting profession to probe and sanction PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) over “unprofessional auditing” of the alleged missing $20 billion oil funds.

Its chairman, Solomon Adeola, added that any amount paid to the company for the audit of the accounts of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) should be recovered by the Federal Government “because no auditing was done”.

Adeola, who spoke in Abuja with reporters on the purported release of the forensic audit report by the firm, said it was meant to mislead, deceive and to send wrong signal to the citizens.

He hailed Gen. Buhari for signaling his resolve to probe the alleged missing oil money after taking over from President Goodluck Jonathan’s government at the end of the month.

He said: “There is need for us to revisit and know the truth behind this particular issue. Where is this $20 billion? Is it really missing? This is not N20 billion; it is billions of dollars, which represent more than two years’ budget of this country in terms of funding.

“If you could remember, there was a press statement by this committee, where we requested that this all important forensic report be laid before the National Assembly, and a copy sent to this committee within a specified period of time.

“This was because we noticed there was some foul-play in that particular report as submitted by this reputable firm, the PricewaterhouseCoopers, where in that report it was adjudged that the amount of money that the NNPC ought or need to pay back was just $1.485 billion.

“Now, the PwC has said there was no report and that what they did was not a forensic audit, but just gathering of information; that a lot of documents were not released to them to carry out this exercise.

“But prior to now, all these were not brought to the notice of this country and the country has been deceived all along.

“And if a reputable firm like PricewaterhouseCoopers can go to that level, I think it’s only fair and proper for such body to be reported to the International Federation of Accounting, Association of Conference, and also to the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria; and to face disciplinary action of all these bodies by explaining their role in this $20 billion saga.”

He called on the incoming government “to henceforth suspend PricewaterhouseCoopers from carrying out any financial audit or investigation on behalf of the Federal Government or into any of its agencies with immediate effect.

“And not only that, it has collected audit fees from the Federal Government. If there was no audit carried out and if there was no report submitted, I think they should go ahead and refund back into the Federal Government coffers the amount collected in carrying out this exercise; failure which should be met with very stiff disciplinary action from the Federal Government and relevant professional bodies.”

He said for a highly rated firm like PwC to be allegedly involved in such financial saga showed that “there is more to it”.

Adeola said all audit exercises and investigations that have been carried out by PwC in the past few years should be revisited by the incoming government.

According to him, this should include the oil subsidy report tendered by PwC.

“Don’t forget during the oil subsidy issue, PricewaterhouseCoopers was engaged to carry out audit exercise. I also implore the incoming administration to carry out verification of the report submitted on the issue of the oil subsidy,” he said.

The lawmaker said his committee and the National Assembly have been vindicated in their insistence that the report was fraudulent.

“We must get to the root of this matter, and we must address this issue once and for all,” he said.


U.S. Likely To Sanction Patience Jonathan, Orubebe, Others

The United States government appears set to sanction Nigeria’s ?first lady, Patience Jonathan, a former Niger Delta minister, Godsday Orubebe, ?and ?the ?governor of Katsina State, Ibrahim Shema, and other Nigerians accused of either disrupting the just concluded elections, or instigating violence.

The U.S. said Monday that it will impose visa restrictions on any Nigerian found to have incited violence or interfered with the electoral process.

The U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, said in a? statement that the U.S. will shut its doors on people involved in any form of violence during the polls.

“Anyone found to have incited violence or interfered with electoral processes will be unwelcome in the United States and subject to visa sanctions,” Ms. Thomas-Greenfield said.

Although Ms. Thomas-Greenfield did not give names of those considered for sanctions, Mr. Orubebe, appears one of the most likely targets.

The former minister openly disrupted the process of collation of the presidential election results in Abuja on March 31, as the event was broadcast live by the international media.

Accusing the head of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Attahiru Jega, of bias, Mr. Orubebe for several minutes asked Mr. Jega to stand down before the process could continue.

The former minister received worldwide condemnation for his actions, and later apologised.

Mrs. Jonathan had said at the ?ruling ?Peoples Democratic Party Women Campaign in Calabar, Cross River State, early March, that anyone chanting change should be stoned.

“I’m telling you, anyone that comes and tell you change, stone that person,” she said. “What you did not do 19 kilikili, is now that age has caught up with you, you want to come and change? You can’t change rather you will turn back to a baby. You will turn back to a baby. From old age nothing, so nothing like change. Rather (it) is continuity.”

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Hate Broadcast: Reps Demand Details of Sanctions by NBC

The House of Representatives has asked the National Broadcasting Commission to produce detailed evidence of penalties it had meted out to broadcast stations that had violated the codes for political coverage and advertisements.

The House Committee on Information and National Orientation gave the directive in Abuja at an interactive session with top management officials of media organisations and regulatory bodies in the country.

The committee, which is chaired by Mr. Umar Buba-Jibrin, had called the meeting to address complaints of “rising cases of violations, particularly the broadcast of hate speeches, advertisements, documentaries and publications” by media houses.

Read More: punchng

Senate Demands Sanction Of Network Service Providers

The Senate has called for more sanctions against mobile network providers for declining quality of services in recent months.

It has thus directed the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) to take action particularly on the recent increase in the rate of call drops in the country.
Senate President Senator David Mark in his remark urged NCC to step up its supervisory role on the service providers. “NCC must buckle up, it appears that they have relaxed in their supervisory role and as such, the service providers have also relaxed,” Mark said.

He added, “The rate of call drop is getting higher. It appears we do not have an option but for the NCC to sanction these service providers.”

The Senate gave the directive after it approved the sum of N60.2 billion for NCC to enhance its operations and the sum of N16.15 billion for the Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF).

NCC has in the past imposed fines and suspended the country’s operators from running promotions but with mixed success.

Credit: NAN

Ukraine Ceasefire Talks/ West Plans Russia Sanctions


Talks regarding restoring peace and ceasefire among conflicting sides, is ongoing in Belarus. Ukraine, Russia and pro-Russia rebels form the oppositions that are considering agreements to end the crisis in eastern Ukraine. However, there are new reports of shelling near the town of Mariupol.

Meanwhile, Western countries are preparing to announce a tightening of sanctions on Russia. They are attending the second day of a NATO summit in Newport, Wales.

The West accuses Russia of sending arms and troops to back the rebels in eastern Ukraine, even though Moscow denies the accusation. The enhanced sanctions are expected to target Russian banking, energy and defence, as well as what British sources call “Putin cronies”.

The UK however says the sanctions will probably go ahead whether or not a ceasefire is agreed at the talks in the Belarus capital, Minsk.