Friday, July 09, 2010

Ndukwe’s replacement @ NCC: ATCON cautions on wrong choice


The umbrella body of telecommunications entities in the country, the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), has warned the federal government and those at the corridors of power that they would resist wrongful choice for the office of the Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) for the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

Responding to questions, last weekend in Lagos, ATCON also condemned the appointment of an acting EVC to replace another acting EVC, saying that it portends ‘bad omen’ for the country.

Speaking through its president, Mr. Titi Omo-Ettu, ATCON said that it is inexplicable to keep Nigerian telecom consumers and industry investors up to three months without any substantive Executive Vice Chairman, for the telecom apex body.

According to him, the immediate past chief executive officer of NCC. Dr. Ernest Ndukwe tenure expiration did not come as a surprise to any well meaning Nigerian, especially in the telecom industry, because his appointment has date of commencement.

He equally said that there is nothing wrong in the government naming Ndukwe’s successor, even two months before he left office on April 1, 2010.

Omo-Ettu, who was responding precisely on the position of ATCON sequel to the reported leadership tussle at the telecom regulatory house, described it as ‘bad omen.’

“It is bad omen for our industry to see the folks in charge replacing an acting EVC with another acting EVC. Our reading of the situation is that there are some people somewhere who do not know the implication of these indecisions on the wellbeing of our industry and on our investments,” he lamented.

ATCON president also said that it is inconceivable that Ndukwe whose terminal date at NCC was not a secret was not succeeded immediately by a substantive EVC.

“It is shocking to say the least,” he declared, stressing that they are suspecting that a few folks want to play pranks, but they would be resisted.

“Chances are that some folks somewhere know that what they are about to do is wrong and they are afraid of doing what they want to do in the fear that you and I might spark in reaction,” he said.

He maintained that ATCON is waiting anxiously and if necessary, we would respond appropriately, because they cannot afford to watch other people from other sectors to come and destroy the foundation ATCON and other well meaning stakeholders have made to bring the sector to where it is today.

“Of course, we are waiting for them to take a decision and, if need be, we shall let them know that we would not fold our hands and allow them to destroy what Nigerians toiled to build. We are waiting,” he asserted.

Champion Infotel recalls that following the reported account frozen at NCC, the regulator denied any such action and leadership crisis in the Commission.

According to Head, Media and Public Relations, Mr. Reuben Muoka, the attention of the Nigerian Communications Commission has been drawn to reports in the media insinuating that the bank accounts of the Commission were frozen, following a leadership crisis, or that there is a leadership crisis in the Commission.

“We wish to also inform the public that there is no crisis of succession in the Commission. For the avoidance of any doubt, Dr. Bashir Gwandu, the Executive Commissioner in charge of Engineering and Standards, have since June 21, 2010, been appointed the Acting Executive Vice Chairman of the Commission,” he said.

Pointing that this followed government’s directive to the former Acting Executive Vice Chairman, Mr. Stephen Bello, whose five-year tenure as an Executive Commissioner with the Commission expired on Monday, July 5, 2010, to proceed on formal retirement.

Also, ITRealms Online recalls that it was reported that one Mr. Onuoha Nnachi, who served as the Technical Adviser to Minister of Information and Communications, Prof. Mrs. Dora Akunyili, has been named the new EVC.

Effort to contact Mr. Nnachi himself and NCC spokesman on the purported new appointment proved unsuccessful as at the time of filing this report.

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