Connect with us

Telecom

NCC TTTR 2021: Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges – Danbatta

Published

on

L- R: Engr. Bako Wakil, Director, Technical Standards and Network Integrity, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC); Mr. Yakubu Gontor, Director, Finance Services, NCC; Mrs. Tolulase Omodele-Rufai, Assistant Director, NCC Lagos Zonal Office; Mr. Adeleke Adewolu, Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management, NCC; Mr. Babajika Mohammed, Director, Licensing and Authorization, NCC; Mr. Chidi Ibisi, Executive Director, Business Development, Broadband Communications Limited; Mrs. Chinwe Maduabum, 2021 Chairman Committee on Talk to the Regulator; Mr. Damian Udeh, Associate Director, Regulatory Affairs, IHS

…as Danbatta charges regulators to find lasting solutions to issues negatively impacting the licensee’s compliance

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, has said that continuous dialogues between the regulator and its various licensees are central to finding lasting solutions to issues negatively impacting the licensee’s compliance with extant regulations and challenging the growth of the telecoms industry.

Danbatta stated this during the second edition of NCC’s 2021 Talk to The Regulator (TTTR) forum held at Four Points by Sheraton, Lagos, over the weekend. The theme of the discourse is, “Improving Stakeholders Satisfaction”.  

The Lagos edition of the programme followed the successful hosting of a similar dialogue in Kano on 16th October, 2021.

The objective of the forum is to get direct feedback from licensees on how the Commission, as a regulator, is meeting licensees’ expectations.

The programme was also designed to identify areas for regulatory improvement, highlight areas where licensees are defaulting as well as address critical industry challenges undermining full accomplishment of the set objectives for consolidating the gains in the telecoms sector.

According to Danbatta, who was represented at the forum by NCC’s Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management, Adeleke Adewolu, the forum is orgainsed in keeping with the Commission’s commitment to continually ensure regulator-licensee interactions to develop collaborative solutions and implementation programmes to the challenges of the telecom ecosystem.

Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Emilia Nwokoro, Deputy Director, Licensing and Authorization Department, NCC giving her presentation on the ‘Review of Licensing Trends’.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Group picture of participants at the Talk to the Regulator Forum.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Adewolu giving the opening remarks.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Mohammed while giving his remarks at the Forum.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Mohammed; Mr. Abdulazeez Salman, Member NCC Board of Commissioners; Adewolu; Gontor.

“The Nigerian Communications Act (NCA, 2003) invests the NCC with powers and responsibilities for the regulation of both the technical and market-related aspects of telecoms infrastructure and services in Nigeria. We consider our role as a regulator very vital to ensuring industry sustainability because NCC considers consultation as the lifeblood of regulation” the EVC emphasised.

The EVC also declared that “we have consistently deployed stakeholder engagement tools like public enquiries, private investigations, written information requests, one-on-one discussions as we are having it now and diverse consumer engagement platforms.

These tools enable us to ensure that our interventions are well-grounded and that our decisions are based on a clear understanding of stakeholders’ perspectives”.

Danbatta said that such interactions fit squarely within the five pillars of the Commission’s Strategic Management Plan (2020-2024), which include Regulatory Excellence, Promotion of Universal Broadband Access, the Development of the Digital Economy, Facilitation of Market Development, and Strategic Partnering.

“Through regular interactions with our licensees, the Commission is able to gain valuable insights to enhance our regulatory output and enabled us to drive excellence in consonance with the five pillars of our strategic vision for the industry as streamlined in the Commission’s Strategic Vision Plan (SVP), 2021-2025,” he said.

Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Wakil while giving his presentation on ‘Short Code Assignment, Type Approval Obligation, and the Commission’s Expectations’.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Gontor giving his presentation on the ‘Implementation of Annual Levy Regulations’.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Joe Emeshili, Principal Manager, Spectrum Administration Department, NCC giving his presentation on ‘Maximising the Potentials of Telecommunications Operations’.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Olumide Samuel, Chief Executive Officer, Priority Communications Ltd asking questions at the Forum.

The EVC also reinforced the Commission’s belief that only through optional performance by the licensees will Nigeria be able to achieve the national objectives and targets in the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) 2020-2030, the Nigerian National Broadband Plan (NNBP), 2020-2025 and other national policy instruments targeted at developing the nation’s digital economy ecosystem.

He said on this basis that the Commission is, “Therefore, we intend to use this forum to seek support for many initiatives that the commission has carefully developed in our quest to enhance market opportunities for all our licensees,” Danbatta said to emphasise NCC’s faith in collaboration with stakeholders and its licensees in order to address any concerns that may impede the attainment of the relevant policy objectives.

The NCC CEO also emphasised that the Commission will continue to roll out forward-thinking and all-inclusive regulatory initiatives to provide market opportunities for all its licensees.

Additionally, Danbatta said NCC is also committed to constantly reviewing licensing framework as well as key regulatory instruments so as to refresh the Commission’s regulatory frameworks and ensure better service delivery for consumers and efficient attainment of other national interest objectives.

However, Danbatta said some licensees are not doing as much as they ought to be doing. “Several licensees are struggling to pay their staff, many are unable to comply with basic licence obligations, some are defaulting in the payment of their Annual Operating Levies (AOL) while the level of interconnect and other inter-licensee indebtedness is still unacceptably high.

Therefore, we are required to ensure regulatory interventions are put in place to address challenges, bottlenecks, and grievances that may arise among the licensees in this regard,” he said.

Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Another cross-section of participants at the Forum.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Cross-section of participants at the Forum.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Attah Ogbadu, Senior Manager, Public Affairs NCC compering the event.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Maduabum in her session ‘on what can the NCC do to ensure the survival of smaller licensees’.

Also addressing the gathering, the Director, Licensing and Authorisation at NCC, Mohammed Babajika, said the forum was intended to foster a harmonious relationship with licensees, identify their challenges and provide feedback on licensees’ fulfillment of their license obligations, and re-emphasize the role of licensees in ensuring good quality of service (QoS) and quality of experience (QoE) for the consumers.
While intimating the licensees of some regulatory initiatives focused on licensing issues, Babajika said despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and its resultant challenges, the Commission was taking measures to further liberalise the telecoms industry by finalising the framework for Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) while also reviewing existing licensing regulations.

In addition, the Director also informed the licensees that the Commission was finalising work on Information Memorandum (IM) for Fifth Generation (5G) technology deployment, which will promote emerging technology trends such as Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Over-The-Top (OTT) Services and Big Data Analytics, Blockchain, among others. 

At the event, presentations were made by the Management staff of the Commission to the licensees and others, who participated actively through listening, making observations and suggestions, as well as seeking clarifications to improve the quality of discourse and the expected outcomes. 

Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Titilola Edu, Assistant Legal Manager, Caricare Development Nigeria Limited asking questions at the Forum.
Continuous Dialogue Critical To Tackling Telecoms Industry Challenges - Danbatta
Emeshili; Olasumbo Olawaiya, Assistant Director, Universal Service Provision Fund.

Telecom

ATCIS Salutes Danbatta’s Effort, Congratulates Reuben Muoka As New NCC Director Of Public Affairs

Published

on

ATCIS Salutes Danbatta's Effort, Congratulates Reuben Muoka As New NCC Director Of Public Affairs

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The Telecom’s Subscriber Advocacy Body – Association Of Telephone, Cable TV and Internet Subscribers Of Nigeria (ATCIS) have eulogised the effort of Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta and NCC officials for sustaining the core vision and mission of NCC.

The commendation was stated at the 90th edition of Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP) held today June 23 2022 at Providence By Mantis Hotel Ikeja, Lagos State.

In his statement, Prince ‘Sina Bilesanmi popularly known as Ojueko the Foremost Telecom Activist and National President of Association Of Telephone, Cable TV and Internet Subscribers Of Nigeria (ATCIS), the leading telecom subscriber masses advocacy body that promotes subscriber interests as well as defends Subscriber right by promoting and endorsing good product & service from mobile network operators, Cable TV and Internet Service providers company to our association member’s across 36 States converge within six geopolitical zones with over 200 million Subscribers membership in Nigeria stated that: “We appreciate and congratulate the Management of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for appointing Mr. Reuben Muoka, an innovative journalist and consummate public relations practitioner, as its new Director of Public Affairs (DPA)”.

Reuben Muoka takes over from Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde, who has assumed duties as the Director of the Special Duties Department of the Commission.

The new NCC’s spokesman was recently promoted to a substantive director, alongside Ismail Adedigba, now Director of Research and Development (R&D); and Gwa-Tobi Mohammed, who has also assumed duties as Director/Secretary to the Board of the Commission.

Muoka was in 2021, appointed to head the Special Duties Department, which superintends the International Relations Unit; Emergency Communication Centres Unit; the Public-Private Partnership Unit; and the Security Services Unit of the Commission. He was promoted as Director of the Department before his current redeployment to lead the Public Affairs Department, the arm of the Commission mandated to manage the image and visibility of Nigeria’s telecom regulator and a leading light of the Nigerian public service.

Muoka is expected to bring his rich and versatile experience in both specialized and traditional journalism, public relations, integrated marketing communications (IMC), corporate communication, and people management, to bear on the Commission’s vision to expand the frontiers of its public goodwill and the impact of its reputational assets.
A former Deputy Communications Editor of the Vanguard Newspapers, and former Deputy General Manager at MTS First Wireless (Nigeria’s first mobile telephone operator), Muoka joined the NCC in 2007 as a Principal Manager and was deployed to the Public Affairs Department where he headed the Media and Public Relations Unit.

He later rose from the rank of Principal Manager to the position of an Assistant Director in 2010, and by 2015, as a Deputy Director, appointed to head the re-engineered Public Relations Unit of PAD. In 2017, he was redeployed to the Policy, Competition, and Economic Analysis Department to head the Economic Analysis unit department.

Muoka earned an M.Sc. degree in Mass Communication from the University of Lagos, specializing in Public Relations and Advertising, where he had earlier successfully completed a Postgraduate Diploma (PGD) in the same field of Mass Communication. Much earlier, he had obtained a bachelor’s degree in Performing Arts at the University of Ilorin.

As a mark of his distinctive journalism career, Muoka received a fellowship from the Egyptian Embassy in Nigeria to undertake a Pan-African training and tour of Egypt in 1999, leading to an award of a continental Diploma Certificate in Journalism at the instance of the Egyptian Ministry of Information, and the African Journalists Union (AJU) in Cairo, Egypt.

The focused, innovative and illuminating coverage and analysis of the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in the pre and immediate post-liberalization period of the telecom industry in Nigeria is credited to the insights of visionary journalists like Muoka, whose pioneering initiative led to the establishment and institutionalization of the Hi-Tech Desk in Vanguard Newspapers in the late 1990s.

As the Chairman of the League of Communications Correspondents (LECCO), Muoka led his colleagues to give voice and focus to the advocacy for the liberalisation and deregulation of the telecom industry in Nigeria in the 1990s.

During his active days in journalism at Vanguard Newspapers, Muoka served concurrently as Africa’s contributing editor to the London-based Communications Week for four years beginning in 1998, during which he undertook copious reportage on the African telecom landscape. The London-based magazine shared Muoka’s work to an enthusiastic global audience in a rare showcase of Africa’s promise as a flourishing point for the emergent converging telecommunications industry. Between 1995 and 2001, Muoka leveraged his expertise to provide part-time public relations consultancy to notable companies and institutions in the telecommunications industry, including the Nigerian Mobile Communications Limited, Abuja; Multi-links Telecommunications Limited, Lagos; Satellite Telecommunications Limited, Lagos; Pulse Marketing Communications Ltd, Lagos; and the Nigerian Communications Commission, Abuja, years before he joined the Commission as a staff.

Reuben Ejike Muoka is a member of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ); a full member of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (mnipr); and an associate member of the Registered Practitioners of Advertising (arpa), regulated by the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON).

On behalf of the Board of Trusses, Elders forum, National, States Excos, and over 200 million Subscribers across 36 states within six geopolitical zones in Nigeria, We heartily congratulate Reuben on his new role and look forward to working closely with our Association and his team in Public Affairs Department, as key internal stakeholders in the Commission’s re-engineering processes to meet and surpass Federal Government’s expectations for a robust telecommunications sector and a remarkably emergent digital economy.

On advocacy alone, ATCIS-Nigeria has spent about N507 million naira according to financial records since 2014 till to date, which has been self-sponsored by Subscriber members without government agencies in Nigeria.

Association of Telephone, Cable Tv & Internet Subscribers of Nigeria has made several impacts on history in what people believe it can’t possible with over 798 newspaper publications, both local and international as well as online news publications, Radio, and National Television Station Interviews with about 267 Success achievements so far to the benefit of every subscriber across the country Nigeria.

ATCIS social platforms are; http://www.atcisnigeria.com
Email: atcisnigeria@gmail.com
Instagram: atcisnigeria
Telegram: t.me/atcisnigeria
Twitter: @atcis9ja
Facebook: atcisnigeria ATCIS hotline & WhatsApp: 07052713300

Continue Reading

Telecom

“Be Ready To Leverage The Power Of 5G To Support Next-Generation Technologies That Enhance Socio-Economic Development”, Says Danbatta

Published

on

L - R Ms. Mistura Aruna, Assistant Director, Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC; Mr. Hafiz Shehu, Chief of Staff to the EVC/CEO, NCC; Mrs. Grace Ojougboh, Head Media and Public Relations, NCC; Mr. Efosa Idehen, Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau, NCC; Prof.Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO, NCC; Mrs. Yetunde Akinloye, Director, Policy Competition and Economic Analysis, NCC; Mr. Reuben Muoka, Director, Public Affairs, NCC; Mr. Yakubu Musa, Special Adviser to the EVC on Media, NCC, during the 90th Edition of the Telecoms Consumer Parliament yesterday 23rd June 2022, at Providence by Mantis Lagos.

…Danbatta Urges Stakeholders To Exploit Opportunities Offered At 90th TCP To Contribute To Deployment Of 5G Network In Nigeria

…To roll out 5G Technology in August 2022

…5G is 10 times faster

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) held the 90th edition of the Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP) with the theme: “5G Technology; Opportunity and Challenges”.

The event was held at Providence Hotel by Mantis, Ikeja Lagos hosted stakeholders in the telecom industry today Thursday, June 23rd, 2022.

Left-Right: Mr. Okechukwu Ndubuisi Airtel, Mr. Sheriff Alimi 9Mobile, Chinedu Ezeigweneme MTN, Mr. Adetola Akinmade NTEL, Mr. Ifiok Nkweini GLO, Mr. Gbolahan Awonuga ALTON; Dr. Adetunji Adenekan Second Vice President Nigerian Medical Association (NMA); Mr. Babagana Digima NCC NODIT; and Mr. Adeleke Adewolu during panelists presentation on 5G at the 90th edition of Telecom Consumer Parliament on Thursday 23, 2022.
Left-Right: Ms. Mistura Aruna, Assistant Director, Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC; Mr. Hafiz Shehu, Chief of Staff to the EVC/CEO, NCC; Mrs. Grace Ojougboh, Head Media and Public Relations, NCC; Mr. Efosa Idehen, Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau, NCC; Prof.Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO, NCC; Mrs. Yetunde Akinloye, Director, Policy Competition and Economic Analysis, NCC; Mr. Reuben Muoka, Director, Public Affairs, NCC; Mr. Yakubu Musa, Special Adviser to the EVC on Media, NCC, during the 90th Edition of the Telecoms Consumer Parliament yesterday 23rd June 2022, at Providence by Mantis Lagos.

The Executive Vice Chairman (EVC), Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, in his address affirmed that the roll-out of 5G technology services in Nigeria is on course and the Commission is confident that the 2022 timeline will be met, he gave this assertion during the 90th edition of Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP) in Lagos on Thursday, June 23, 2022.

The EVC reiterated the need for a SWOT analysis through the TCP forum, he noted that in line with the Information Memorandum, licensees are expected to commence roll out of 5G services effective from August 24, 2022.

The TCP is a high-level engagement and interactive program annually organized by the Commission for the consumers and other stakeholders in the telecommunications industry. The event-themed “5G Technology: Opportunities and Challenges”  was an opportunity for discussants to interactively explore the 5G technology before the actual rollout later in the year. The event is set to place all stakeholders in a proactive mode.

L - R Ms. Mistura Aruna, Assistant Director, Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC; Mr. Hafiz Shehu, Chief of Staff to the EVC/CEO, NCC; Mrs. Grace Ojougboh, Head Media and Public Relations, NCC; Mr. Efosa Idehen, Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau, NCC; Prof.Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO, NCC; Mrs. Yetunde Akinloye, Director, Policy Competition and Economic Analysis, NCC; Mr. Reuben Muoka, Director, Public Affairs, NCC; Mr. Yakubu Musa, Special Adviser to the EVC on Media, NCC, during the 90th Edition of the Telecoms Consumer Parliament yesterday 23rd June 2022, at Providence by Mantis Lagos.
Left-Right: Mr. Okechukwu Ndubuisi Airtel, Mr. Sheriff Alimi 9Mobile, Chinedu Ezeigweneme MTN, Mr. Adetola Akinmade NTEL, Mr. Ifiok Nkweini GLO, Mr. Gbolahan Awonuga ALTON; Dr. Adetunji Adenekan Second Vice President Nigerian Medical Association (NMA); Mr. Babagana Digima NCC NODIT; and Mr. Adeleke Adewolu during panelists presentation on 5G at the 90th edition of Telecom Consumer Parliament on Thursday 23, 2022.

During his opening remark, Danbatta stated Nigeria has an estimated population of 214 million with an average growth rate of 2.6% annually, approximately 76.46 per cent and in line with these demographic changes, internet penetration grew from 3 per cent in 2004 to 73.82 per cent as of September 2021 and broadband penetration is at 43.69% as of May 2022. The potential for expansion is a great opportunity for 5G deployment and for operators to recoup their investments.

The NCC CEO highlighted several potentials use cases for 5G networks as broadly categorized by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) being Enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB); Massive machine-type communications (mMTC); and Ultra-reliable and low-latency communications (URLLC).

“The goal of the Commission is that Nigeria becomes one of the leading nations with 5G technology deployed in a manner that is beneficial to all stakeholders and contributes maximally to the Digital Economy Policy of the Federal Government of Nigeria”.

To achieve this, Nigeria actively participated in the ITU-R study cycle under Task Group 5/1 which deliberated on the identification of the 5G spectrum in the Millimeter wave (mmWave) band” said Danbatta.

Speaking on the challenges characterizing the 5G networks according to the ITU, the EVC said the requirements for more spectrum and vastly more spectrally efficient technologies, are more than what the current 3G and 4G systems require.

“Considerable work is required for implementing fiber services and ensuring availability of wireless backhaul solutions with sufficient capacities, such as microwave and satellite links, and potentially with high-altitude platform stations (HAPS) systems where they are deployed,” he added.

The EVC also mentioned the need for skilled professionals with requisite knowledge of technology, the fewer number of 5G-enabled devices, managing expenses involved in 5G network deployment as well as challenges with security and privacy concerns

Our presence here today attests to the importance of TCP as a high-level engagement and interaction with consumers and other stakeholders in the telecommunications industry 45 per cent already and growing to surpass the target.

The Executive Commissioner Stakeholder Management, Barr. Adeleke Adewolu who coordinated the panel session urged all participants to exploit the opportunities offered by the 90th Telecom Consumer Parliament to contribute to the deployment of the 5G Network in Nigeria.

“We should conclude this event with solutions to challenges that are associated with 5G deployment in countries that had taken the step before Nigeria. We must also have a clear roadmap on how the opportunities offered by the technology can be maximized for the benefit of Nigerians” said Adewolu

In his earlier remark the Director, Consumer Affairs Bureau, Efosa Idehen, recalled the Federal Government on September 8, 2021 approval of the deployment of the Fifth Generation Network Policy. He noted that, following the approval, the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Pantami directed the Commission to implement the 5G policy for the country.

The Commission’s response to the directive swung into action and brought all stakeholders on board. There have been interactions in this regard at different fora which include today’s 90th Edition of the Telecom Consumer Parliament (TCP), which is the Commission’s flagship stakeholder engagement forum” said Idehen.

The event was attended by representatives from Mobile Networks Operators (MNOs), Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Prof. Chiso Ndukwe-Okafor, Executive Director at Consumer Advocacy and Empowerment Foundation (CADEF)Prince Sina Bilesanmi, President of Association of Telephone, Cable TV & Internet Subscribers (ATCIS) amongst others attended the event.

Continue Reading

Telecom

NCC, Stakeholders Chart New Path To Effective Telecoms Regulation, Industry Growth

Published

on

NCC Issues Final Letters Of Licence Awards To 5G Spectrum Winners

…As NCC’s Second Telecoms Leadership Summit holds in Lagos

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has hosted the second edition of the Nigerian Telecoms Leadership Summit, in line with its tradition and commitment to engage with stakeholders in the telecom ecosystem with a view to pursuing proactive regulatory interventions targeted at ensuring an enabling operating environment and improving investment climate in the Nigerian telecom industry.

The event, which took place at the Eko Hotels, Victoria Island, Lagos, was an assemblage of key industry stakeholders with the central objective to analyse the current state of the sector, process the issues, and chart new pathways to a more effective and sustainable regulatory regime for the stability and growth of the Nigerian telecom industry.

Speaking at the event, the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, said that the theme of the Summit: “The Future of Telecom Regulation in Nigeria,” presented a unique opportunity for the Commission to interact with critical stakeholders.

Through such interaction, the EVC said the Commission would be able to brainstorm and migrate to new frontiers of visionary regulations that will galvanise and foster desired growth in the industry.

Danbatta explained that the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic triggered political and socio-economic uncertainties globally and underscored the crucial role of digital connectivity in keeping societies functioning, as online life became, essentially, a new way of life.

He stated that with the increased dependence on digital platforms, the theme of the event had become necessary in order to put in place a broader regulatory framework that will enhance and protect the integrity of the industry in the emergent digital economy.

In this context, the EVC said the NCC will continue to diligently pursue the implementation of policy frameworks such as the Nigeria National Broadband Plan  (NNBP) 2020-2025; and the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) 2020-2030 which are consistent with NCC’s regulatory interventions such as the Commission’s Strategic Management Plan (SMP), 2020-2024 and Strategic Vision Plan (SVP), 2021-2025, among others.

Danbatta said all the policy and regulatory frameworks principally seek to provide a platform for Nigerian citizens to engage in innovative developments for the telecoms industry and improve the nation’s ability to compete in the ever-competitive global space.

Explaining further the transformation happening as a result of the expanding spectrum of the digital ecosystem, Danbatta said the industry is witnessing new business delivery and breakthroughs due to the expansion of boundaries of digital Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), especially fintech and e-commerce firms. The EVC said those consequential ecosystems have contributed to the growth of the Nigerian digital economy riding on telecom infrastructure.

Danbatta aptly reckoned that digital services and content provided by these SMEs will leverage broadband infrastructure and the upcoming deployment of the Fifth Generation (5G) network being driven by the Commission to deliver more innovative and high-quality experiences to consumers.

“The Commission’s successful auction and licensing of the 3.5GHz spectrum licenses in the last quarter of 2021 for the deployment of 5G technology is set to create many opportunities for the development of the industry and as a regulator, we are conversant with the fact that a dynamic regulatory environment is needed to sustain this industry growth”, Danbatta said.

“Therefore, it has become imperative for us, as critical stakeholders, to appraise the progress made so far as an industry and chart the course for the future of the telecoms industry in the country,” he stated. The EVC also informed that one of the sectors that had been positively impacted by the digital transformation is the financial services sector.

Amplifying the EVC’s position, in his keynote address titled: “The Future of Telecom Regulation in Nigeria: Challenges of Access to Funding”, the Chief Executive Officer of Stanbic IBTC, Dr. Ademola Sogunle, asserted that the telecommunications industry had become the sustaining stimulus of the post-pandemic era as consumers’ behaviors continue to shift towards digital trends. Danbatta said that the contribution of the telecom sector continues to benefit the entire ecosystem.

While reviewing resolutions of the first edition of the Summit held in 2019, the Director, Policy, Competition and Economic Analysis, NCC, Yetunde Akinloye, said the Commission had implemented the recommendations of that meeting among which were the Executive Order on Duplicity of Taxes and Levies, and Harmonization of Right of Way (ROW) fees.

She said other recommendations implemented include addressing interconnect debt, review of the framework on interconnect clearinghouses to ensure 10 per cent of traffic is routed through clearinghouses, incentives for small operators as well as monitoring compliance with the Code of Corporate Governance.

To sustain the momentum from the previous industry leadership engagement, this year’s Summit provided the Chief Executives of companies in the telecom sector an opportunity to meet the EVC and top Management of the Commission at a roundtable for deeper thinking and greater reflection on the challenges in the sector and proffer meaningful solutions.

Continue Reading

Trending