Nigerians Lament After Multichoice Increases Price Of Subscriptions

Nigerians Lament After Multichoice Increases Price Of Subscriptions

Nigerians are beginning to let out their frustration after pay TV company, Multichoice, increased the prices of their offerings.

The firm said from April 1, subscribers will pay more for all its bouquets and its premium package on DSTV will cost N21,000, no longer N18,400.

Compact Plus which cost N12,400 before will now go for N14,250, while Compact will cost N9,000 instead of N7,900.

Others include Xtraview + PVR access fee cost N2,300 now go for N2,900;

Business new price cost N2,669; Padi fee N1,850 now increased to N2,150 Yanga cost N2,565 before will now go for N2,950; Confam will pay N5,300 and not N4,615; Compact which cost N7,900 before will now go for N9,000; Compact Plus will cost N14,250 instead of N12,400; Premium which cost N18,400 before will now go for N21,000; Confam will cost N5,300 and no longer N4,615, while Yanga subscribers will pay N2,950 and not N2,565.

The firm blamed “rising costs of inflation and business operations” for the increase which also affects GOTV packages.

The new GOTV rates are as follows:

Max cost N3,600 before now go for N4,150; Jolli cost N2,460 before now go for N2,800; Jinja will cost N1,900 and no longer N1,640 while Lite subscribers will pay N900 and not N800

The increase comes days after Nigeria’s consumer protection agency ordered Multichoice to introduce features that allow subscribers to maintain the same subscription fee for at least a year.

Customers should also be allowed the option of suspending their subscription at least four times a year, and Multichoice must also introduce toll-free lines for customers across all networks, the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) said.

The directives were the latest regulatory efforts by the Nigeria government to rein in the South African company often accused of anti-competitive behaviour and customer exploitation. Multichoice increased prices in 2020 and an attempt to further raise its rates last year stalled.

The FCCPC said it launched an investigation into the firm’s practices in 2020 after a series of complaints of abuse of its dominant position.

It directed the company to introduce reforms or face sanctions.

The FCCPC directed the firm to introduce a price lock option that allows subscribers to maintain the same subscription fee for a minimum period of one year subject, and increase the number of times all subscribers may suspend their subscription up to at least four times annually.

It also asked the company to provide completely toll-free customer service lines which are operational 24 hours daily, and through which consumers may receive support with respect to their use of the services offered by MultiChoice Nigeria. These lines must be toll-free across networks, not only within the same networks as is presently the case.

In what appears a response to the directives, Multichoice said it will allow customers who pay on or before their due date (before April 1, 2022) to pay the old price. The company also said it would customers pay the old price if they pay consistently before their due dates for a period of 12 months.

Customers who pay for 10 months upfront on the new price will get the 11th and 12th month free.

“The price adjustments will enable us serve our customers better, offering them MORE CHOICE and GREAT VALUE all the time,” Multichoice said.

“We remain committed to making the best content from around the world accessible at varying price points to cater to the needs of individuals and families across the country.”

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