NCC seeks govs’ assistance on broadband penetration
The Nigerian Communications Commission ( NCC ) has called on state governors to assist it in achieving the 30 per cent broadband penetration target by 2018. The Director of Public Affairs, NCC, Mr Tony Ojobo, made the call during an interview with newsmen in Lagos, on the sideline of the 2017 Dinner and Awards of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations ( NIPR ). Ojobo was awarded the “PR Personality of the year 2017” by NIPR.
He said that the governors and their various agencies should assist by ensuring easy approval for Right of Way ( RoW ) for the deployment of infrastructure.
According to him, the industry has challenges of deployment of base stations in the states because of the issue of the Internally Generated Revenue ( IGR ). “A lot of approvals are delayed, in terms of siting base stations in the states this year. We have had base stations shut down, we also have had issues with the Rights of Way.
“There had been reluctance with the various agencies under various levels of government to give approval as quickly as possible for the deployment of infrastructure. “The Executive Vice Chairman, Prof. Umar Danbatta, has made a presentation at the Governors Forum on how these challenges are actually contributing to the poor quality of service, and that there is need for us to have pervasive rollout of base stations.
“Pervasive base stations deployment can narrow the areas that don’t have coverage, so that the issue of access and broadband penetration target can be realised. “Unless we do that, we will keep having challenges in being able to meet with the government policy of 30 per cent by 2018,” he said.
Ojobo said that by 2018, it was expected that the country would have 30 per cent broadband penetration, but some of the challenges were slowing down the process. “But we believe that in 2018, some of these challenges will be tackled, especially as governors are beginning to appreciate the importance of these infrastructure in their states.
“We believe that these challenges will begin to fizzle out,” he said. On his award as the PR Personality of the year, Ojobo said it was a call to do more on his responsibilities. He said that NCC would continue to put what it was doing on the public space and improve on it.
“We will make sure that we say it as it is all the time and also ensure that we take back the feedback we get from the people we serve, that is our stakeholders, to our management. “This is so that areas that need improvement will be improved upon, so that consumers and the generous stakeholders will be better for it. “I want to thank God for this award.
It is humbling when you are recognised by your professional group for contributions to the professional practice of public relations in Nigeria. “I dedicate this award to God and to the Nigerian Communications Commission that has given me the platform to express, in terms of the ways I carry out my responsibilities,” he said. Ojobo said that NCC was regulating an industry that was very difficult, an industry that was serving about 153 million active subscribers.
He said that the subscribers were utilising the services on a 24/7 basis, hence, there were always issues to talk about. According to him, the challenge has been how to talk to the people who are facing challenges because of the services they are receiving. “We can’t tell them there are no challenges, we can’t assume we have not seen that they have problems.
“But what we have continued to do is to identify with the challenges they are going through in this industry. “We have also tried to communicate that the industry is a work in progress, we have not gotten to the place we should be. “The most challenging part of this job is when we are having issues in the industry and how to address those issues and still speak the truth to the people,” he said.
Ojobo said that the commission had used all its platforms, both the social media platforms and the mainstream media in trying to communicate, to make the people know what it was doing.
- ^ NCC gives out N17m to winners of tennis championship (thenationonlineng.net)
- ^ NAN (nan.ng)