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Nigeria clamps down on illegal frequency usage

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has shut down a branch of First Bank of Nigeria in Ibadan, and the Aladbaka branch of the same bank in Akure for alleged illegal use of frequency bands.

It is common for bank branches in Nigeria to have their own telecommunication masts and towers to transmit data, owing to a dearth of fixed lines in the country.

According to the NCC, Nigeria only has 500,000 fixed lines in a country that has a population of approximately 160 million.

NCC officials said that the two banks stand accused of illegally use of frequencies in the 5.40Ghz spectrum band, without getting permission from the NCC to do so.

At Ibadan, officials of the bank reportedly mounted resistance to the enforcement activities, resulting in its operation manager being arrested. The manager also allegedly refused to lead the NCC to the bank’s server room, to enable them isolate the equipment.

The case was different at Akure branch, where the officials of the bank fully cooperated with the enforcement team of NCC.

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