As a build up to actualize the 30 percent broadband penetration by 2018, Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Prof. Umar Danbatta has revealed that Broadband penetration in Nigeria rose from 14 percent in August last year to 20.95 percent as at the end of 2016.
Danbatta made this known while delivering a lecture titled “The role of ICT Infrastructure in Tertiary Education in Nigeria – NCC interventions” recently at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka in Enugu State.
The former University Don, while quoting the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Broadband Commission added that the present figure is getting close to the 30 percent penetration required by the 2018 as prescribed in the National Broadband Plan.
He ascribed the increase to the timely and comprehensive interventions and regulatory efforts of the Commission, which forced it from 8 percent in 2015 to the 20.95 percent penetration in 2016.
According to him, some of the comprehensive interventions and regulatory efforts of the Commission, include the licensing of several ICT infrastructure companies to provide broadband infrastructure and the opening up of other Spectrum resources to support broadband deployment for the 3G and 4G networks.
“The Commission has licenced two Infrastructure Companies (INFRACOS) for Lagos in the South West and North Central regions of Nigeria and has commenced the process to licence other companies for the other geopolitical zones (South West, South East, South-South, North West and North East) of Nigeria. This is to provide fibre optic infrastructure on the basis of an Open Access Model for any telecommunications company to deploy its network and expand to host broadband services,” he added.
He also noted that the Commission has issued the 2.3GHz and 2.6GHz spectrum licences to provide the operating companies spectrum resources for improved quality of service, adding that NCC has consulted with stakeholders in order to commence a Spectrum Trading regime in Nigeria for improved spectrum utilisation and efficiency.