• News - North Central - FCT
  • Updated: August 01, 2022

Pantami Backs Telecom Operators, Says No To Five Percent Duty On Calls

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Pantami has supported telecom operators against the proposed five percent duty on mobile calls.

Pantami made his stand known on Monday during the maiden edition of the Nigerian Telecommunications Indigenous Content Expo in Lagos.

He said he would ensure that the move by the federal government is reversed to support the operators.

The federal government had proposed a five percent duty on all mobile calls to improve revenue generation, a move which received criticism. 

In his remark, he said, “Beyond making our position known today, we will go behind the scene and go against any policy that will destroy the digital economy sector. 

"This is a sector we cherish so much and we are ready to go to any extent, legitimately and legally to defend its interest."

He further revealed that due process was not followed in coming up with the decision.

He added that the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) had neither been informed of the development nor the chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Communications involved in the process.

“We have not been contacted officially. If we were, we would have pleaded our case. 

"As a minister and based on the provision of the constitution of Nigeria, session 148, we are exercising the power of Mr President."

He further alleged that when VAT was increased to 7.5 percent, he was not consulted, adding that the National Assembly also agrees with him on the fault of the process. 

“You introduce excise duty to discourage luxury goods like alcohol. 

"Broadband is a necessity. If you look at it carefully, broadband contributes two per cent to 7.5 per cent to the economy.

"Imposing five percent excise duty on operators will only bring hardship at this time, and that cannot be tolerated."


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