Association of Telecommunications Company of Nigeria, ATCON, has called on the Lagos State Government to consider its request for a slash on Right or Way (RoW) charges by 95%.
President of ATCON, Mr. Olusola Teniola stated this while leading ATCON’s NEC on visit to the Lagos State Infrastructure Maintenance and Regulatory Authority, LASIMRA.
Teniola said, aside the 95% reduction on RoW charges, the present economic realities are taking huge tolls on the members hence the need for the Governor Akinwunmi Ambode led administration to also consider 60% reduction on telecoms levies in the State.
“I would like to thank the General Manager/chief executive officer of Lagos State Infrastructure Maintenance and Regulatory Agency for creating the opportunity for the National Executive Council of the Association of Telecommunication Companies of Nigeria to meet with the management of LASIMRA.
The ATCON’s President expressed the members’ delight over the positive development in the industry, which has been identified as the fastest growing sector of the Nigerian economy and which presently contributes more than 8% to the nation’s GDP.
“This success”, he said, “is not without the slash in telecoms levies by over 40 percent and charges on right of ways 90 percent which your organization, LASIMRA supported and we are pleased to report some sort of relief to our members that are operating in Lagos State.
“We also want to appreciate the professional way in which LASIMRA has been regulating the industry. We thank the LASIMRA for being steadfast and being professional. We particularly thank the new management of LASIMRA for sustaining the tradition of excellence in the organisation.
In spite of these positive developments, our association has some concerns, some of which are listed below: Unstable Foreign Exchange Rates Takes Toll on Telcos
– The free fall of Naira against Dollar has constituted a serious source of worry to our sector and as a matter of fact our member companies have tried to make sure that Lagosians and Nigerians as a whole have access to qualitative communications service but the continuous depreciation of the Naira is not encouraging from a CAPEX roll out perspective.
Telcos’ Revenue Decline: “Revenue Derived from Voice is seriously being challenged – To worsen the situation we are as an industry, the telecommunication companies are barely making any money from voice (due to ARPU rates dropping considerably) and the direct implication of this is that the revenue that is generated from data is now being challenged by the cost of operating the business which is increasing on a daily basis and may lead to laying off (of further) staff.
“Nervousness about the implications of the introduction of this system in place of RoW and work already achieved in setting a NGN500 / linear meter rate with Lagos State Government; our members would like to be fully engaged in the process to avoid prohibitive charges creeping back in!
He said, “Generally, our request is for a further slash in telecoms levies by over 60 percent and charges on rights of ways by 95 percent. This would enable our members to build more base stations and accelerate the roll out of much needed fibre (ICT passive infrastructure) for the good of all Lagosians and by extension, Nigerians.”
Responding, General Manager/CEO, LASIMRA, Mr. Babajide Odekunle, said he was very glad to receive the National Executive Council of the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria under the leadership of Mr. Olusola Teniola, President ATCON.
He further said that he is set to bring some transformation and innovation to how Lagos State Infrastructure Maintenance and Regulatory Agency carries out its activities.
According to the LASIMRA boss, aside the traditional mandates that established LASIMRA, the Lagos State Government under the leadership of Governor Ambode, the agency has also been charged with the responsibility of overseeing other public utilities (Power and Oil and Gas).
He also made the NEC understand that the Association of Licence Telephone Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) and Internet Service Providers Association of Nigeria (ISPAN) were meant to be sub-group under ATCON.
He said the agency is currently carrying out and audit exercise of the numbers of masts and towers that are in Lagos State with the aim of granting some investors right of ways to build ducts and he said he would be willing to work with ATCON in order to work out sensible and fair prices for the would be investors.

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