The Federal Government has asked MTN Nigeria and other mobile operators to suspend the four naira (N4:00) charge per 20 seconds on USSD access to banking services.

The directive was issued by the Minister of Communications, Dr. Isa Pantami, on Sunday after a twitter user, Mustapha Hadi, tweeted at Pantami, requesting he acts on the claim.

MTN had sent a message to its mobile customers that with effect from October 21, 2019, N4 will be charged on every 20 seconds spent while using USSD access to banking services.

“Yello, Please note that from Oct 21, we will charge N4 per 20 seconds for USSD access to banking services. Thank you.”

Dr. Pantami, in a statement signed by his spokesperson, Mrs. Uwa Suleiman, asked the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to ensure that the operator suspends such plans until he is fully briefed.

“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 on 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) ensures the operator suspends such plans until the Honourable Minister is fully and properly briefed.”

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