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NCC Reaffirms Commitment to Bridging Broadband Infrastructure Gap

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The Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) has reaffirmed commitment to bridge the gap between existing and planned fibre infrastructure to increase broadband penetration in the country.

 

Prof Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) stated this at the 10th edition of eWorld Forum, held in Lagos.

 

The conference organized by Ajomedia Limited was themed: ‘Roadmap to Broadband Everywhere’.

 

Danbatta who was represented by Oluwatoyin Asaju, Director, Spectrum Administration, Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) said that they have set up strategy to ensure access to pervasive Broadband through an Open Access Model in line with National Broadband Plan.

 

He noted that this is in line with the commission’s continued doggedness in ensuring that the lacuna between the existing and planned fibtre infrastructure in Nigeria is narrowed.

 

He added that the deployment of Optic Fibre transmission network was adopted in the “Open Access Model” so as to bridge the current digital gap and deliver fast and reliable broadband services to households and businesses.

 

He stated that adequate broadband has been globally acknowledged as the foundation for transformation to a knowledge-based economy.

 

According to him, “The World Bank has found that a 10 % increase in broadband penetration in developing countries results in a commensurable increase of 1.38% in GDP.

 

“It has also been proven that for every 10% increase in Broadband penetration, a commensurate increase in employment of 2-3% is achieved. Productivity also increases to between 5-10% with a 10% increase in BB penetration.

 

“So it is almost impossible to equate any other modern technological tool with Broadband, because of its inherent potential to address issues relating to sustainable development and simultaneously facilitate socio-economic development, while instigating transformative change in all the sectors of the economy.”

 

Danbatta stated that the establishment of Broadband Implementation & Monitoring Committee (BIMC) was to drive the broadband infrastructure licensing and deployment.

 

He said that the licensing of the six Infracos was to ensure that they provide IP fiber Optic capacity, to all the 774 LGAs of the federation on an open access, price regulated basis, with a 10 Gbps Point of Access (PoA) capacity in each local government of the federation.

 

He revealed that broadband can reduce poverty and inequality, help ensure access to health and education, help to mitigate climate change, promote peace and international cooperation, and ensure sustainable development in the decades to come.

 

He called on government at all levels to curtail the issues of multiple taxation and regulation right of way issues as well as timely and simplified approval processes for site acquisition and harmonized right of way charges in the industry.

 

This according to him, will enhance the spread of Broadband to the unserved and underserved areas of Nigeria, because if you build an efficient Broadband network everything else will follow.

 

Aaron Ukodie, Managing director Ajomedia and Publisher eWorldNews, speaking earlier at the conference said that the time is now for us to start setting a new digital agenda, which will lead to achieving a digital revolution.

 

According to him, to achieve the revolution, the regulator has to focus more on enabling the players and making the environment more investment-friendly.

 

“The licensed infracos are encouraged to give access to all parts of the country, and this will give them free hands to deploy technology, as new technologies are emerging.

 

“Nigeria should begin to think about these new technologies, 5G, and how we are going to be able to achieve the digital revolution,” he said.

 

He stated that for us to achieve this desired revolution, consented effort should be made by the regulator to provide enabling environment for players in the industry to thrive.

 

Ukodie noted that the environment should be more investment-friendly than it is now, if we must reach the underserved and the unserved people across the country.

 

 

 

 

 


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Ugo Onwuaso is an ICT enthusiast. He believes technology should be used for general good. He holds a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from the Lagos state University.

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Subscribers Seek Free Calls, Data as Palliatives

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Telecoms subscribers have appealed to the telecoms companies to provide them with free voice calls, in addition to more data palliatives.

Subscribers Seek Free Calls, Data as Palliatives

Deolu Ogunbanjo, president, NATCOMS

Deolu Ogunbanjo, president, National Association of Telecoms Subscribers (NATCOMS), who spoke during a recent webinar organised by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), said the call became necessary to cushion the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, which he said, had grounded global economies, and created so much challenges for telecoms subscribers across networks.

Ferdi Moolman, CEO, MTN, recently said the telco alone had provided 3.71 billion free SMS to more than 51 million subscribers across every state of the Nigerian federation; which he said was a projection that 75 per cent of all MTN subscribers, utilised the service while it lasted during the pandemic.

But while commending the telecoms operators for providing free SMS to subscribers, Ogunbanjo said: “Telecoms subscribers in Nigeria are also looking forward to the telecommunications companies in Nigeria to give free voice call and additional data palliatives to subscribers on their various networks.”

Ogunbanjo commended NCC for setting up the pace on the consumer rights to seek redress by providing the 6-2-2 Toll-free line.

“The Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) have also done the same by providing the Toll-free customer care lines. He however said unfortunately, this is not so for other companies operating in Nigeria.

In other countries, we all know that companies do provide Toll-free redress /complaint lines as one the consumer’s rights to seek redress anytime.

This Redress/Complaint Toll-feee lines should be provided by all companies operating in Nigeria that is expecting some form of feedback /redress on their products and services offerings, as this promotes consumer-centrism,” Ogunbanjo said.

He drew the attention of NCC to the unwholesome practice of mobile phone importers and manufacturers, insisting that with a population of over 200 million people and a subscriber base of over 190 million subscribers as at April this year, Nigeria is a very big phones market and as such, all phones coming into Nigeria must be of standard quality and must satisfy the yearnings and aspirations of phone users, particularly as it concerns the phone chargers that come with mobile phones into Nigeria. “All over Nigeria, our electrical wall sockets are the 3-pin-plug type.

However, phone dealers, to our disappointment bring into Nigeria the 2-pin-plug phone chargers, a development that infringes on the consumer’s right to product satisfaction in view of the fact that mobile phones are consumer durables,” Ogunbanjo said.

He therefore called on NCC to engage mobile phone importers and manufacturers to ensure that all mobile phones coming into Nigeria come with 3-pin quality chargers.


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CPN Says 5G Will Drive Economic Growth, Social Inclusion

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Prof. Charles Uwadie, president and chairman in council of the Computer Professionals Registration Council of Nigeria (CPN), has said that the adoption of 5th Generation (5G) telecom network will drive economic growth and social inclusion in Nigeria.

CPN Says 5G Will Drive Economic Growth, Social Inclusion

He stated this during a virtual press conference.

Uwadie said that the adoption of 5G had been touted as the next frontier of investment across the world.

He added at the press conference held to announce the agency’s 2020 IT Professionals’ Assembly and Annual General Meeting that the latest telecom technology could increase Nigeria’s Information Communication Technology Sector’s contribution to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product. But he said 5G’s adoption would not be without challenges in Nigeria.

“It is for this reason that the 2020 IT Professionals’ Assembly would be considering the technological and regulatory challenges associated with the adoption of 5G viz-a-viz the future of frequency bands, deployment and coverage, device support, security and privacy, digital infrastructure challenges, outdated regulatory policies, removal of impediments to the expansion of digital infrastructures, commitment to actions that promote the long-term growth of the digital economy, misgivings and health concerns against it, among other issues’’, he said.

 


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Konga Hosts Discount Party for July Live Auction by 12pm Today

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Konga is set to host a discount party for the July and third edition of Konga Last Price, a monthly live online auction pioneered by the foremost e-Commerce brand.

Specifically, the discount party which forms the major theme of the auction holds today, Monday July 6, 2020 from 12pm to 2pm.

Konga Last Price is a monthly digital auction which holds every first Monday. The July edition, which coincides with the celebration of Konga’s three-week long 8th anniversary sales extravaganza, is set to witness a discount bonanza.

Konga has gone ahead to further slash starting prices for the auction in order to give shoppers more incentives as part of its anniversary offer.

Today’s session, which will commence by 12pm prompt, has seen huge anticipation and excitement from eager shoppers, many of whom have expressed their determination to bargain hard for the products on offer, taking advantage of the reduced starting prices.

For instance, auction starting price for a 350 litres chest freezer worth nearly N130,000 has been pegged at N57,000.

Also, bargain-hungry shoppers can start bidding at N49, 783 for a 1.5hp split unit air-conditioner going for over N110,000 in average retail price in the market.

For smartphone lovers, bid prices for the Samsung Galaxy S10 E will open at a little over N88,000 for multiple units of the device worth nearly N200,000 in the market.

Meanwhile, Konga has put together a wide collection of star products from a variety of categories for the live online auction.

Among the array 0f products that have been lined up for the mega discount sale today are Home & Kitchen appliances such as air conditioners, gas cookers, washing machines; consumer electronics including Home Theatre Systems, TV sets, microwave, sandwich makers and electric kettles, among others; quality FMCG products, mobile phones, computing devices, generators and other power solutions, all from the biggest brands.

Expected attendance for today’s discount party and live auction, which will be hosted concurrently across Konga’s social media channels on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube and the website atwww.konga.com is estimated to gross over 300,000 participants.

The event will feature three sessions – a live auction across Konga’s aforementioned social media channels; a timed auction on the Konga website and a flash sale on social media involving no bids which will run concurrently with the social media live auction.


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