Thursday, 1 December 2016

Government Policies: No to Data Hike and Call Tax.

Situations in Nigeria tempts me to give some validity to Nollywood movies, where a whole village suffers from a plague because one or more person have offended the gods. This post was almost named “Wetin we do sef?” (The gods of Nigeria or leaders). Nigeria is not a third world nation neither is the pervasive under-development because she lacks human capital or natural resources. We are so blessed that many have opined that the blessing is now a curse.
God did not only shower Nigeria with Natural resources, he blessed our lands with different Natural resources that made us an envy and the same time a mockery in world affairs. Amidst the humongous promises of democratic administrations, none has been able to deliver for our collective benefits the desires of the people. The current administration made us dreamed that we are closed to the Promised Land and we voted without reprehension. The amplified promise to fight corruption was the clincher that gave this administration smooth sailing into Aso rock.

For some unknown reasons our leaders has decided to inflict upon us, policies that will only make the common man cry, regret and curse them in public and the secret of their rooms, (Who knows if these ceaseless curses from the past has a hand on our leaders actions today, and more curses are being placed on these recycled cabals, maybe that’s why the bible said we should “pray for our leaders”). We understand that this government is fighting corruption and they are taking steps to curb the economic recession, but it has also become obvious that even the mediocre, educated or technocratic policies they have made are steps in the wrong direction. It’s not about taking steps, or making policies, it’s about taking the right steps and policies that will bring the people to El Dorado.

I wonder how somebody like Mr. Godwin Emefiele, (CBN governor), a man that was formerly at the helm of affairs of Zenith Bank suggested that the fight against recession should include taxation of calls above three minutes, nor why Alhaji Babashitu sanctioned NCC plan to hike the prices of internet data makes any sense, this and more begs me to wonder wetin we do dem sef?

We can go on and on and sing the tone of the last administration sold petroleum at $90 per barrel, but we should not forget that at that same period, Greece and other European nations economy crashed. This suffice to say that the CBN governor should start thinking of leaving a remarkable legacy like is two predecessors (Mr. Charles Soludo and Lamido Sanusi) did.

The inhumane policies of this administration e.g. the proposed internet data hike by NCC, is making many who created and influenced media platforms that called Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan clueless is beginning to turn the same line of thoughts against PMB’s administration because they’ve been disappointed. The apparent recession combined with the security challenge in the North and South keeps bamboozling our military and economist that they keep making irregular policies and having no antidote to remedy the situation. Every move they have made so far is laying good stepping stones for the imminent return GEJ.

#newwarri has been very careful not to be critical or antagonistic to the government, but since the current federal administration keeps making policies that only seek to phlebotomize the people. We’ll work in tandem with our objective of building a newwarri with programs that will create opportunities for private-public partnership in spotlight events and other avenues, but also write and carry out campaigns to awaken every citizen in Warri to their civic responsibilities and obligations.

NCC authorizing all telecommunication to increase data price on the first of December 2016 is a sine quo none for informational and goodwill disaster for this administration. This deliberate plan to incapacitate the most active population of the country is brazen display of fear of what Nigerian Internet community is capable of. Access to information has not only transformed the world, it’s creating thousands of jobs in Nigeria. Internet data in its early days cost a lot of, but the healthy competition amongst the mega internet providers, forced down internet price that ensured both Jack Robbinson, Dick and Harry can have access to cheap and good internet.
NCC came out to say that smaller communication companies like spectranet, smile etc were putting pressure on them to create a level playing field for them and big telecommunication companies e.g. MTN, GLO, Airtel and Eltisalat. There’s also the rumored reason that, because our data prices are way cheaper than that of other countries.

We at #newwarri think these are not valid reasons; this is a cruel and insensitive plan. For the over five hundred thousand people living and working in Warri who does not use a smile or spectranet data plan, because they are not here and probably more expensive (by the way they are only in selected and major cities) how does this affects or benefits Warri? How’s the government that her citizen collectively surrendered their sovereignty to, for protection and provision helping?

Government is supposed to cushion these platforms and not aggravate it. This administration benefited from growing technology and easy access to the internet, they should not try to cripple the goose that lays the golden egg.

#newwarri expects NCC to think of ways to revitalize Nitel and also provide free internet at public spaces and all institutions of learning, not hike the price. NCC should be the one championing campus data plans, but they are trying to reduce the customer base of our only indigenous telecommunication company who at this time is championing easy and cheap campus data and call plan.

Is NCC aware that this new plan will increase more capital flight? Eltisalat, Airtel and MTN are companies that will definitely export their profits to their world headquarters which obviously is not Nigeria, so you can imagine the foolishness in this policy.

Thank God they have come to their senses, and have suspended this obnoxious policy for further consultations. Well this should not be discussed even in the farthest future. This should be the end of this episode. Future discussion should be on cheaper data for communication and free internet at public places.

I should quickly point out here that the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele should focus his strengths and educational qualifications on proper thoughts and policies and not the taxation of calls above three minutes. In this terrible economic situations, Government officials should be the ones tightening their belt not the people, after all we have tried SAP (Structural Adjustment Program) under IBB and we came out kwashiorkored.

Nigeria is volatile; anything can trigger a peaceful demonstration or violent protest. Why won’t we, when a government that promised change is trying to change them into only God knows.

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