Between Chinedu, Musa, Iya Basira and MTN’s Fine. By Anjuwon Oluwole
Never had any Nigerian Regulatory agency lived up to it duties in recent time, as witnessed when the Nigeria Communication Commission, NCC fined telecommunications giant MTN a whopping sum of $5.2 billion for failing to disconnect millions of its unregistered mobile lines.
Since this decision, Nigeria’s public domain had been filled will various agruement for and against this fine.
Those against the fine sees it as draconian and excessive. Some claim they do not have problem with the regulations and fines, but with the total sum of money.
They argue that it could force MTN out of Nigeria, therefore creating massive job loss to Nigerian staffs in the South African firm.
With various charts and figures flying around to justify why the fine is excessive, this same people refuse to see the demerits of the action of telecommunications gaint in flouting the regulations of NCC.
The consequences of MTN’s action in disobeying our regulations cut across multiple issues that are detrimental to the growth and development of Nigeria.
Be that as it may, there are many socio and micro economic activities being engaged in by millions of Nigerian petty traders and SME owners, with the like of Chinedu, Musa and Iya Basira, facing worst business hardship from the various bodies like the trade and market associations, local government, state government amongst others.
It would surprise you that Chinedu who sells fairly used clothes, Musa a fruit seller and Iya Basira who owns a ‘buka’ local restaurant respectively, pay as much as 5000 weekly to various revenue collecting bodies, whom aggressively and arbitrarily ask these petty traders and SME owners to pay what they hardly make as profit.
No one tend to protect these noble and hard working men and women in order to transform their businesses into multinationals. They are being exploited, yet we turn away our eyes away from those whom we should support and support those whom would wire majority of the profits they make from us to their home country.
It is nice to note that a million plus local petty business and SMEs are better than one large multinational like MTN. These are the businesses which would drive our developing economy, rather than chasing the foreign investors.
With business friendly policies, that would protect our local businesses and easy to assess low interest loans amongst others, Iya Basira and her contemporaries, would contribute meaningfully to the development of our developing economy by employing numerous unemployed Nigerians and contributing massively into Nigeria’s GDP.
Anjuwon Oluwole: Let discuss on twitter @tweetjuwon