The Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta said he will facilitate the attainment of 70 percent broadband penetration by 2025.
While also ensuring consumer protection and empowerment, and consolidation of spectrum trading to ensure maximum and efficient usage of available frequencies.
He made the disclosure at an interactive session with senior media chiefs from the mainstream and online media community.
According to Danbatta, other areas of focus will include continuous SIM registration audit to provide security and curtail incidences of banditry, kidnapping, and armed robbery; creation of Emergency Communications Centres (ECCs) in more states of the federation; and execution of the counterpart funding agreements with the licensed Infrastructure companies (InfraCos) to facilitate the digital transformation of the economy.
He added that when he came on board five years ago, 217 access gap clusters were identified in the country affecting 40 million Nigerians without access to telecoms services. “But today, we have reduced the access gap clusters to 114 with 15 million of the 40 million digitally excluded Nigerians now having access to telecoms services. We are committed to addressing the remaining access gap clusters, which are areas outside the frontier of economic viability to ensure the remaining 25 million Nigerians have access”.
“The diligent implementation of NCC’s Strategic Vision Plan (SVP), which focused on the 8-Point Agenda, has helped to lift broadband penetration from 6 percent in 2015 to 42.02 percent by July 2020. The sector’s contribution to GDP increased from 8.50 percent in 2015 to 14.30 percent in the second quarter of 2020. In financial terms, the Q2 2020 contribution translates to N2.272 trillion.”
In the same vein, Danbatta commended the media for the great role being played in the reportage of the telecom sector over the years. He urged the media practitioners to continue to be objective and constructive in their coverage of the activities of the Commission.