‘Improve broadband services too’- Consumer Groups

Consumer groups have given the thumbs up to plans to reduce broadband cost but they also want services to be upgraded.

Fomca secretary-general Datuk Dr Paul Selvaraj said the association supports measures to reduce prices and improve performance so it could add value for consumers.

“It’s long overdue. We fully support the minister’s firm actions. Telecommunication companies have gone too long in making excessive profits through high unreasonable pricing and lower performance,” he said when contacted yesterday.

He was commenting on posts on Twitter by Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo who said telecommunication companies have until the end of this month to submit proposals for the new fixed broadband packages to the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC).

Gobind on Sunday said that he hoped once the proposals were submitted to the MCMC, then it could be implemented and broadband prices would drop and the speed increased by the end of the year.

Penang Consumer’s Protection Association president Datuk Korisatan Karuppiah said it was vital that the broadband services were improved as Malaysia was a developing nation.

“Speed and price are very important. I don’t know why we never paid attention to this before,” he said.

Korisatan said state governments should also play a role in providing Internet services to consumers by providing free Wi-Fi.

“For example, the Penang government provides free Wi-Fi in the state in public areas so I hope this will be introduced in all states,” he added.

Muslim Consumers Association of Malaysia (PPIM) chief activist Datuk Nadzim Johan said the move was timely.

“We are entitled to better services and we could have better proposals by the telecommunication companies.

“I think it’s only fair for Malaysians to get better (broadband) services,” he said.

PPIM secretary-general Datuk Dr Ma’mor Osman said broadband providers should upgrade connectivity and services.

He said Malaysia needed to improve on its fixed broadband services compared to other countries.

Dr Ma’mor also said broadband service providers should explain its packages well to consumers to avoid confusion.

It was reported that Gobind said that proposals were initially supposed to be submitted before Aug 31 but there were requests for it to be extended for two years.

That request, said Gobind, was rejected and the extension is only until Sept 30.


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