Imagine receiving an alert believing it to be some good news only to see, “Yello, as requested by your bank, from Oct 21, we will start charging you directly for USSD access to banking services. Please contact your bank for more info.” If you received the above message, then you’re in company of millions of Nigerians who received the same message.
The truth is, nothing comes as a surprise anymore under the Buhari administration. Buhari himself previously acknowledged the fact that his government has been pursuing unpopular policies which according to him, is in the best interest of the country
He said, “It is not an easy job to sell the administration’s services, we are doing unpopular things and facing powerful individuals and taking on invested interest who are accustomed to the corrupt era.
“But we must do things the right way, if we promised change then we must deliver it. This is regardless of whose interest is touched. There must be a manifest departure from the old order.
So, treat the above message as one of those things and many more to expect from the current administration. But while you’re at it, there’s some good news coming from the Federal Ministry of communications.
According to a report by the NTA, Minister of Communications, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, demanded the suspension of plans to begin USSD charges as notified in messages sent out to Nigerians.
The information reads:
The attention of the Federal Ministry of Communications has been drawn to the viral text message allegedly sent by the Mobile Network Operator MTN Nigeria and other Mobile Operators notifying subscribers of a four naira (N4:00) charge per 20 seconds on USSD access to banking services from the 21st of October 2019.
The office of the Honourable Minister of Communications Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami FNCS, FBCS, FIIM is unaware of this development and has hereby directed the sector regulator, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) ensures the operator suspends such plans until the Honourable Minister is fully and properly briefed.
Nigerians can at least, for now, take solace in the above message by the Ministry of Communications. But as previously stated, nothing should come as a surprise.