NCA Debunks Media Reports on Banning Whatsapp, Skype Calls

The National Communications Authority (NCA) has rejected claims that it is deliberating banning over- the- top calls in the country. 

The NCA’ argument is that the real message it meant to pass across in the press statement it issued on the matter have been misunderstood.

According to the NCA,  the issue is an emerging trend and the press released is meant to inform and encourage discussions on the issue as there is need for it to be considered carefully by all stakeholders.

See – National Communications Authority Receives Proposals To Restrict Internet Calls

The Chief Executive Officer of MTN Ghana, Ebenezer Asante had  called on the NCA to work on regulating OTT calls to stop the increasing loss of revenue suffered by telecommunication companies and government.

According to him, the telecoms companies are losing more money through OTT calls than through SIM BOX fraud.

“In as much as Sim Boxing is illegal and we must all fight very hard to stop it, there is a much bigger issue with over the top calls generated through the internet media. So when you make a whatsapp call you are making the call through the internet and bypassing the traditional channel,” he said.

Pointing to some measures taken by some countries in the Middle East to stop OTT calls, Mr. Twum Asante suggested that all social media calls be redirected through the traditional channels like it is done in those countries. According to him, it is important to protect the operator in the country because that is the only way government can generate enough revenue from the sector.

Unfortunately, after the said press statement by the NCA was released, so many media houses misinterpreted the contents and message of the statement. This resulted to claims that the NCA is planning to ‘ban’ instead of ‘regulate’ internet calls.

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It is therefore, the wish of NCA that media houses seek clarifications from the Authority and join hands with them to develop the industry for the benefit of our valued consumers.

To this end, the NCA, under the auspices of the Ministry of Communications, is organizing a Digital Family Forum as part of this year’s World Telecom and Information Society Day. The forum, which is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, 17th May, 2016, at the Accra International Conference Centre, will focus on two (2) key issues; National Roaming and the OTT Services.

The media and all interested parties are invited to participate in the forum where views and perspectives will be sought from all stakeholders on these very important issues.

In conclusion, the NCA is also seeking continued contributions and feedback from stakeholders and the general populace on the issue at hand.