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Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Number portability: Aigbinode wants speedy action

Apex telecommunications regulator in the country, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), has been tasked to speedy action over the implementation of the proposed number portability.

Making this charge, last weekend, the Executive Vice Chairman, ZOOMmobile Limited, Mr. Ken Aigbinode, in an exclusive chat with ITRealms Online, said that speeding up actions on Number Portability would encourage competition among the operators, especially those with improved quality of service.

According to him, ZOOMmobile is very much disposed to number portability system.
Also, Mr. Aigbinode noted that infrastructure sharing is the way to the future, and as part of efforts in living this out, his firm is co-sharing infrastructure with other operators nationwide and would continue to encourage that aspect of its operation.

Number Portability (NP) allows subscribers to change their service provider without changing their telephone number.

“Number Portability offers immense benefits to subscribers because they can more easily change service providers without having to notify all of their friends and colleagues of a number change,” part of the consultation paper stated.

ITRealms Online recalls that NCC, recently decided to implement a ‘one-way’ Number Portability (NP) among operators as the exercise would be executed in phases.

According to a 33-page consultation paper on ‘Implementation of Number Portability in Nigeria’ released a few weeks ago, NCC indicated the modalities of implementing NP.

Just as NP is another tool to further increase the tempo of competition, among telecom service providers on issues of concern to the subscribers based on quality of service (QoS), customer care, Value Added Services (VAS) to name a few.

The Commission had reiterated its resolve to go on with the initiative because it serves as incentive for service providers to improve their quality of service and customer care options as well as availing them the option of entering into more roaming agreements through investment of some of their profits wisely.

“Typically, Number Portability (NP) rewards those service providers having better customer services, network coverage, service quality and pricing,” part of the paper read, indicating that the initial consultation paper on Number Portability will be implemented by all operators eventually in the country including exchange operators, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), Next Generation Networks (NGN) operators and mobile operators.

“Transit or interconnection operators will also implement Number Portability as it relates to direct routing of calls to the proper serving or terminating network as calls traverse their network avoiding unnecessary rerouting of calls,” the paper further stated.

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