Ghana Directs Telcos To Stop Offering Voice and Data Bundles That Expire

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The Ghanaian government has issued a directive to telecommunication operators in the country to stop the practice of “expired” voice and data bundles that are purchased by consumers.

According to Buzzslate, in a letter, Ghana’s ministry of communications wrote to the director general of their national communications authority about the directive. The letter was copied to the CEOs of MTN, Vodafone, Airtel Tigo and Glo too.

“All unused data and voice bundles purchased by subscribers do not expire and must be rolled over with the next recharge,” it says on the letter.

According to the publication, only AirtelTigo in Ghana offers data bundles that do not expire. This new directive means that consumers from the competition will enjoy this new feature.

This directive by the Ghanaian government is a response to the move by how the telcos handled the communications service tax implementation. Instead of passing on the tax to subscribers, the Ghanaian government says that the telcos decided to take advantage of that 3% increase (moved from 6% to 9%) to pass on the entire tax to subscribers. This apparently increased their profit margin at the expense of their subscribers.

The move to have data and voice bundles that do not expire was part of the measures that were put in place to minimize the negative impact of deduction of the tax.

Data and voice bundles that expire are some of the more contentious issues we face as consumers. This move could probably signal a shift in the industry and could pressure other governments to effect such a policy to the telcos that operate in their respective countries.