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Nigeria: Industry Group Insists On Pay-As-You-Go Billing System For Pay-TV

The Association of Telephone, Cable TV, and Internet Subscribers (ATCIS) is pursuing a call by subscribers to implement a pay-as-you-go (PAYG) billing system for cable television subscribers.

During the World Consumer Rights Day in Port Harcourt earlier this week, the National President of ATCIS, Sina Bilesanmi, spoke to the Nigerian authorities requesting that they implement a directive for pay-tv operators to reduce subscription rates and to introduce the PAYG model.

He also called on the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Ministry of Telecommunications and Digital Economy, Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) to conduct cost-based research of the pay-tv market and set caps for subscription rates in the country. He urged them to investigate how the PAYG billing system is implemented in other countries and probe why Nigeria is an exception.

In response to the call by ATCIS, John Ugbe, the Managing Director of Multichoice, said the operator would be unable to implement the PAYG system. Bilesanmi was disappointed by the feedback and disagreed with Multichoice’s stance on the matter. He believes the model has been implemented in other countries and has proved to be effective.

To support his argument, Belesanmi said, ATCIS is not requesting free services from the operators. Still, the request is for fairness in pricing and to provide a variety of options to the consumer.  Consumers should be allowed to retain the current subscription; however, a PAYG system is another model that can be adopted, he added.

Bilesanmi has also called for improved telecom services, reduced data and voice tariffs, a 5% borrowing rate, and affordable and reliable internet services.

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