Nigeria’s Minister of Communication, Omobola Johnson, has revealed the Government’s plans to speed up the delivery of much-needed ICT infrastructure. She also disclosed that her ministry would be working closely with the Federal Ministry of Works to streamline and standardize the processes.
“The National Economic Council last month formally endorsed these guidelines and has also committed to streamlining and standardizing the levies that are charged on telecoms infrastructure. Working with the Ministry of Environment we have finally been able to align the NESREA and NCC regulations on base stations,” Johnson said in a keynote speech.
Johnson explained that there were systems in place to allow the government to iron out any other issues that might arise.
“These are extremely significant achievements and milestones as they have established the predictability of the cost of infrastructure development in the ICT sector, reduced the cost of network deployment by ensuring that for every Naira that is spent on infrastructure more is spent on actual infrastructure and less on administration and taxes, as well as shortened the period for application processing,” she said.
After television stations migrate from analogue to digital, as directed by the Nigerian government, it is estimated that $2 billion (N320 billion) in precious spectrum can be reallocated for broadband use in the country.
“The spectrum gain after the transition can be used for mobile Broadband. This will enable broadband penetration into the rural areas, with its attendant benefits. Properly managed, the sale of this leftover spectrum by auction should yield over $2 billion,” said Edward Amana, former director of engineering at the NTA.
Charlie Fripp – Consumer Tech editor