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NCC, FRCN join forces to drive corporate governance compliance in telecoms

As part of reforms to deepen Quality of Service (QoS), the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has sealed understanding to partner with the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRCN) to strengthen compliance by players in the telecoms sector on national and sectoral corporate codes of governance
Speaking during a courtesy visit by the Management and Board of FRCN to the Commission in Abuja Thursday, the Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management, NCC, Mr. Sunday Dare, who received the FRCN team on behalf the Executive Vice Chairman of the Commission, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, said the Commission was ready to provide its full support and collaboration by working together to entrench the best corporate governance practices in all sectors of the Nigerian economy.
He said the NCC believes that sound Corporate Governance is a sine qua non for meaningful growth and economic development, particularly for an industry as dynamic and complicated as telecoms, stressing this was why the NCC issued the Code of Corporate Governance for telecom industry in 2014 and made it mandatory for its larger licenses in 2016.
Dare further noted that the FRCN also lunched the Nigerian Code of Corporate Governance in 2018 to achieve broadly the same objectives as the NCC Code on an economy-wide basis. The FRCN Code, however, takes effect from January 2020.
He also explained that while the two Codes have the same primary objectives of enhancing corporate performance through adherence to best practice principles, it is natural that there would be areas of divergence, which he said the Commission and FRC can work harmoniously together to address for the overall benefits of the country.
According to him, “It is our understanding that the National Code will exist simultaneously with sectoral Codes such as the NCC Code, which will now be described as ‘Guidelines’; where conflicts exist between the two Codes, the stricter provisions will apply; and the National Code b FRC gives flexibility for sector regulators such as the NCC to adapt Governance Principles to suit the peculiar needs of the sector.”
Responding, the Executive Secretary and Chief Executive Officer, FRCN, Mr. Daniel Asapokhai, who led his delegation, commended the NCC for its sectoral code initiative, stressing that increased engagement of the businesses and licensees affected by such Code must be strengthened.
FRCN boss averred that “While we have the national Code, having sectoral code is also recognized; we only need to work harmoniously to ensure we collectively achieve our objective of ensuring that more Nigerians businesses survive by making them more resilient through corporate governance codes and ultimately ensure that we make our economy more attractive to investors; as such, we need to collaborate more as organisations.”