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NCC suspends DND to enable telcos disseminate voter’s education information

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has temporarily suspended the Do-Not-Disturb (DND) 2442 short-code  to enable telecom operators  disseminate voter’s education information to Nigerians ahead of February 16 and March 2 general elections.

The 2442 DND short-code enables Nigerian subscribers to bar or stop unsolicited SMS adverts sent to their lines by telecom operators (telcos).

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But NCC in a statement on Thursday said upon due consideration of the upcoming general elections, it decided to temporarily suspend its directive to telcos on DND, in order to enable them disseminate specific information on voter’s education on behalf of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

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The commission said in implementing the suspension, telcos are to be mindful of existing directives regarding the timing and regularity of such messages and the fact that the temporary suspension is only with regards to the specific messages on voters’ education.

However, NCC in a paid advert published in some newspapers on Thursday said telcos should ensure that their facilities are not used to disseminate political or religious contents which are abusive, insulting, intimidating and harassing, and/or which incite violence, hatred or discrimination against any person or group of persons.

“MNOs shall provide service to participants in the political process, only to the extent that their licence and the regulatory process permits.

“MNOs shall maintain the principle of neutrality in all their dealings regarding all the political process.

“MNOs shall at all times seek and obtain the approval of the Commission at all times’’, the commission said.

The NCC has expressed its readiness to strictly monitor the activities of the telcos for the duration of the temporary suspension.

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