The Federal Government has directed MTN Nigeria and other mobile operators to shelve the plan to charge four naira (N4.00) per 20 seconds on USSD access to banking services.
Minister of Communications, Dr. Isa Pantami, issued the directive in a statement signed by his spokesperson, Mrs. Uwa Suleiman, on Sunday.
Pantami said the office of the Minister of Communications was not aware of the development, leaving it with the option of suspending the plan until it is properly briefed.
The statement 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 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) to ensure the operator suspends such plans until the Honourable Minister is fully and properly briefed.”
In a viral text message allegedly sent by MTN Nigeria to its customers, the company had hinted that come October 21, it would charge N4 per 20 seconds for USSD access to banking services.