House of Representatives yesterday passed into second reading a ‘Bill for an Act to reduce unsolicited messages received by GSM subscribers in Nigeria’.
The lower chamber stated that the move was aimed at addressing the prevalence and incidences of ringing tones and unsolicited messages received by phone users.
Leading the debate on the general principle of the bill, the sponsor, Hon. Aliyu Madaki, said the bill intends to provide a legal framework to address the incidence of unsolicited ringing tones and unsolicited messages.
He argued that the measure would strengthen the operational base of the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC.
The lawmaker explained that the bill empowers any aggrieved party to file a civil claim before a High Court and provides penalty thereof.
He noted that no legislation currently exists to address the incidence, lamenting that this had left consumers at the mercies of service providers.
According to him, “this is exploitative and not in tune with the services rendered by any service provider globally and Nigeria cannot afford to be left out”.
After many lawmakers had spoken in favour of the bill, it was subsequently referred to the Committee on Telecommunications for further legislative action.

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