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NCC Set to license Amateur Radio Frequency

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has begun the process of licensing 60GHz Band frequency for the deployment of Amateur Radio services in Nigeria.

 

As a prelude to the licensing process the commission held a stakeholders forum on the modalities on the process in Lagos yesterday.

 

Prof.Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman / CEO, Nigeria Communications commission said, that the commission as a matter of tradition is institutionalizing formal policy of participatory regulation and the practice of industry-wide consultations in carrying out its regulatory functions.

 

The EVC represented by Mrs.Abigail Solanke, Director Research & Development, (NCC) stated that, as a world class communications regulatory organization, the commission sincerely believes that their actions must be guided by decisions that takes into consideration the inputs of all stakeholders.

 

He implore for the active participation of all stakeholders, in the deliberations that would lead towards opening of 60GHz V-band and the development of regulatory framework for amateur radio services in the Nigerian communication industry.

 

Danbatta said, “As we are all aware, the radio frequency spectrum is the fundamental resource for the provision of wireless communication services and has increasingly become scarce due to the emergence of new technologies and the growing demand for wireless services.

 

“In line with our eight point agenda to facilitate strategic collaboration and partnership with relevant stakeholders, facilitate broadband penetration, optimize spectrum usage and its benefits, ensure regulatory excellence and operational efficiency amongst others.

 

“As well as to traditionally institutionalize policy of ensuring participatory regulation by conducting industry wide consultation with all relevant industry stakeholders.

 

“The commission has decided yet again to provide an avenue for stakeholders and users of telecommunication resources, to converge and make inputs to be considered in the opening up of the 60GHz spectrum band and the draft regulatory framework for amateur radio.”

 

He noted that, the commission is using this medium to present draft authorization framework for the use of amateur radio services in Nigeria, adding that the intent is to license qualified persons or companies who are interested in the amateur radio services and amateur satellite services for the purpose of non-commercial exchange messages, intercommunication, self training, private recreation, wireless experimentation and technical investigations.

 

Engr. A. K. Nwaulune, Director, Spectrum Administration Department, Nigerian Communications Commission during his presentation said that, the objective of the authorization is to ensure interference-free operation by all users of the amateur frequencies and optimal utilization of the bands.

 

He noted that, the purpose of the framework is to provide a clear and comprehensive outline for amateur radio operations in Nigeria.

 

He said that “eligible persons who may apply for amateur radio licenses must be over eighteen years of age.

“He should be technically competent to operate amateur radio station in line with ITU-R M.1544, which covers the basic skills required of an amateur operator.

 

“He must have passed the written examination and the practical Morse code test conducted by the Commission or a recognized authority in another country.”

 

He listed the types of licenses issued by the Commission for Amateur Radio as, Novice Class Amateur Authorization; General Class Amateur Authorization and Advanced Class Amateur Authorization.

 

Engr. Nwaulune, stated that the Use of Amateur Radio Station without an appropriate license is an offence and punishable under the Act, adding that applicant wishing to obtain an authorization to use an Amateur Radio shall download and complete an application form from the Commission’s website www.ncc.gov.ng. Spectrum Administration Application form.

 

“Applicant shall pay a non-refundable application fee of One Thousand Naira (₦1,000.00) only through the Central Bank of Nigeria Remita payment platform.

 

“Foreign Applicant who hold an authorization to operate an amateur radio station shall be issued a license to operate an amateur radio station while in Nigeria. The applicant can apply for the period of stay in Nigeria not exceeding one year,” he stated.

 

He noted that, the Commission will process an application for Amateur Radio license within 30 days upon receipt of a duly completed application form and evidence of payment of specified fees, provided also that the applicant has passed the mandatory Morse Proficiency Test administered by the Commission.

 

 


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NCC Holds First Virtual Bi-Annual Meeting with Telcos

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Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and senior executives of telecommunication companies on complaints management recently held the regular bi-annual meeting, in compliance with COVID-19 management protocols instituted by the Federal Government.

NCC Holds First Virtual Bi-Annual Meeting with Telcos

Prof Umar Danbatta, EVC, NCC

At the meeting, which focused on consumer relations and complaint management processes, the NCC and the telecom service providers agreed that the compensation policy should be revisited and complied with at all times.

This is to ensure full compliance with the new Complaint Categories and Service Level Agreement (CC/SLA) consented to by the NCC and the service providers in the telecommunication ecosystem.

Additionally, it was decided that the Commission and telecom service providers will hold follow-up discussions on “Fair Usage Policy” on unlimited data bundles/data rollover, in order to provide a clearer explanation and better understanding of the processes and procedures of the policy for the benefit of the consumers.

The Commission hereby wishes to restate that its direction of June 2018 to service providers to commence implementation of data rollover from 26 June 2018, remains in force.

In other words, a subscriber’s unused data must be rolled over to his/her subsequent data subscription.

Therefore, the Commission urges service providers to continue to inform and educate subscribers on the procedures and processes for data rollover.

Service providers also agreed to ensure that senior-level customer relations officers support their respective complaints management teams, to resolve complaints that were not resolved to the satisfaction of the consumers when such complaints were first reported.

The service providers also promised to ensure that complaints are resolved in both the letter and spirit of the recently-reviewed Service Level Agreement (SLA).

With respect to services subscribed to through third parties (such as banks), which are not rendered, the meeting resolved that telecom service providers should explore initiating service level agreement with banks to ensure uniformity and speed in the resolution of complaints relating to billing.

All parties to the meeting equally agreed that telecom service providers will carry out pervasive consumer education and enlightenment campaigns about their products and services to ensure their subscribers have the information they require to make informed decisions and get value for money spent.

The commission wishes to state that it was very pleased with the impressive attendance, participation, and the quality of decisions taken at the bi-annual meeting.

The NCC is, therefore, determined to continue to work closely with the service providers and other stakeholders in the Nigerian telecom sector in order to improve on the quality of service, and by implication, the quality of consumer experience.

The bi-annual meeting, which has held regularly since 2018, focuses on ensuring improvement in Quality of Service (QoS) and Quality of Experience (QoE) in the telecom industry.

It has served as a veritable platform for the Commission and service providers to discuss and agree on measures that will enhance prompt and effective consumer complaint resolution in telecom service provision in Nigeria.

 


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Ericsson Launches Integrated Packet Core Firewall to Boost 5G Core Security

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Ericsson is advancing 5G core network security for communications service providers (CSPs) through the launch of the cloud native Ericsson Packet Core Firewall.

Core network security is a key factor in CSPs’ forward business planning as they pursue innovative new business opportunities powered by 5G and emerging technologies.

Ericsson’s new solution, part of the Ericsson 5G platform, is aimed at enabling CSPs to pursue those opportunities not only through the best packet core network security capabilities, but also in the most cost-effective way for their business.

Powered by A10 Networks’ advanced security technology, the Ericsson Packet Core Firewall solution is already seamlessly integrated with Ericsson Packet Core Gateway in  Ericsson’s dual-mode 5G Core offering. The solution also supports end-to-end network slicing and edge computing.

The cloud native offering is optimized to scale with user plane to the edge of the network to cater for secure core network 5G use cases. By protecting a communications service provider’s core network – including sensitive service provider data and customer data – the all-in-one solution secures 5G service availability.

The solution delivers more than 50 percent total cost of ownership reduction over dedicated user plane security solutions, while maintaining 5G latency. This is enabled through a single CNF (Cloud Native Network Function) solution with simplified maintenance and orchestration.

Folke Anger, Head of Packet Core Solutions, Ericsson, says: “Securing service availability in 5G requires a holistic view beyond dedicated security solutions.

“We are now launching the Ericsson Packet Core Firewall seamlessly integrated into our Packet Core Gateway. This will provide our customers with substantial total cost of ownership improvements while ensuring their 5G services to the edge.”

Patrick Donegan, Founder and Principal Analyst, HardenStance, says: “Telecom operators need to think differently about how they implement security with a 5G Core. Ericsson’s Packet Core Gateway together with Packet Core Firewall integrates user plane and security functions in a single Cloud native Network Function (CNF).

“This allows significant TCO savings and is well optimized for edge use cases. It also enables automated, closed-loop, threat mitigation independent of transport equipment vendor.”

Dhrupad Trivedi, CEO and Board Chair, A10 Networks, says: “Mobile operators are transitioning to more cloud native and distributed architectures to support 5G. This increases the critical need for security and network availability.

“A10 is excited to expand our partnership with Ericsson to enable current and emerging 5G use cases. The Ericsson Packet Core Firewall powered by A10 Networks is ready for cloud native deployments and addresses the evolving business needs for operators.”


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Anambra Indicates Interest to Host NITDA’s South-East Zonal Office

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The Anambra State Government has indicated interest to provide enabling environment for the National Information Technology Development Agency, (NITDA) to situate its South-East Zonal Office in the State.

The State, also among other requests, expressed willingness to host some of NITDA’s events, programmes and establishment of information Technology hub in the State.

The State made the requests during a working visit to NITDA by Mr Theo Manfa, managing director/chief executive officer, Anambra State Information and Communication Technology Agency, (ANSICTA).

Mr Manfa in his address,  expressed that the call for special requests by the state is necessitated by the fact that the state “has long been known as a home of innovation and entrepreneurship, through the various markets like Onitsha and Nnewi and the plethora of locally produced goods they spawned over time.”

He said that innovation and entrepreneurship are important elements to drive the digital economy which the nation is striving to create adding that the state has been watching with keen interest the activities of Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy and NITDA which necessitated the intended partnership.

While itemizing the identified possible areas of collaboration, Mr Manfa said that the state would like to partner NITDA on the newly launched Nigeria Government Enterprise Architecture, (NGEA), training of youths in hardware and software skills, entrenchment of e-Government culture and learning interventions for secondary school students with the aid of Unity Board.

In his remark, Dr Vincent Olatunji, director, e-Government Development and Regulations, who represented Mallam Inuwa Kashifu Abdullahi, director general, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) at the meeting said it is gratifying to know that the state is keenly following the activities of the Agency in its drive to achieving digital economy for the nation.

He commended the state for developing its ICT policy to serve as road map on how the state would execute its IT plans adding that ANSICTA should ensure it drives the policy for the state.

While assuring the state that all its requests are not beyond what the Agency could provide, he enjoined it to formally write to the Agency by itemizing and prioritizing the area of collaborations.

The highlight of the meeting was the presentation of Award of Appreciation for his outstanding achievements in driving the digital economy.


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