New NCC EVC Aminu Maida vows to improve broadband penetration from 70% to 90% by 2025

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The new commitment aligns with the objectives of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s “Renewed Hope” agenda
Teledensity drops to 102.97% as internet subscriptions rose by 0.57%

The new Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr Aminu Maida, has unveiled plans to enhance broadband penetration in Nigeria from the current 70% to a remarkable 90% by 2025. This was made known on Tuesday by the new EVC while addressing the Commission at its head office in Abuja.

The new commitment aligns with the objectives of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s “Renewed Hope” agenda, which seeks to place the nation on the path to digital transformation.

As seen in a press release, Dr. Maida, in his address emphasized the need for strategic focus on ensuring that all Nigerians have access to affordable and dependable broadband services, showing the effective diffusion of broadband infrastructure across the entire country.

“We would align with this aspiration to increase broadband penetration to 70 per cent and to cover 90 per cent of the population by 2025. Therefore, we need to build a reliable telecom industry with impressive quality of service (QoS) indicators with quality of experience (QoE) as our watchword and ultimate goal. This also requires us to address a number of issues such as the Right of Way (RoW) challenge, ensuring security of our telecom infrastructure, among others. Efforts must be made to significantly improve service delivery by ensuring the NCC is performance-driven,” he said. 

In recognizing the important role of quality of service (QoS) on telecom networks, Dr. Maida outlined his priorities, which include enhancing network quality and supporting the Federal Government’s vision for a digital economy. With the increasing digitization of various aspects of life, he stressed the importance of building robust broadband connectivity that facilitates seamless digital transactions and serves as the foundation for e-governance and socio-economic initiatives.

Read More: NCC wants telecom companies exempted from excise duty amidst multiple taxation concerns

Challenges Aminu Maida must provide solutions to

Dr. Aminu Maida faces several challenges in expanding broadband penetration in Nigeria. In his own words:

“Mr President has an agenda from which all of us are going to take our direction. The two major areas are job creation and enabling the digital economy. Where we are going in a nutshell is; that everything that we do in this Commission has to align directly with the Strategic Plan of the Hon. Minister of Communications, Innovations and Digital Economy, Dr Bosun Tijani, and ultimately to the Renewed Hope agenda of His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu. We would not deviate from that.”

New NCC EVC Aminu Maida vows to improve broadband penetration from 70% to 90% by 2025
The new EVC while addressing the Commission at its head office in Abuja.

In addressing the root of these challenges, Dr Maida must focus on several key initiatives by working closely with relevant government agencies to streamline the approval process and reduce associated costs, making it easier for companies to deploy broadband infrastructure.

Additionally, ensuring the security of vital telecom infrastructure is essential, and the EVC has to collaborate with security agencies to implement protective measures and monitoring mechanisms.

In expanding broadband access to underdeveloped regions, Dr. Maida can facilitate public-private partnerships to incentivize infrastructure development in these areas, potentially through subsidies or tax incentives for companies willing to expand their networks.

Moreover, promoting competition among Internet Service Providers (ISPs) can help reduce prices and make broadband services more affordable, just as regulatory measures may be necessary to ensure transparent billing and fair pricing models.

new EVC with members of the Commission at its head office, Abuja.

Speaking on more ways broadband access can be achieved, Maida emphasized the critical role of effective spectrum management and utilization in achieving the envisioned digital connectivity agenda. This is essential for extending services to all Nigerians and businesses in the country.

According to him, digital literacy is crucial for maximizing the benefits of increased broadband penetration. Collaborating with the Ministry of Education and other relevant bodies, Dr Maida should also incorporate digital literacy into the education system and launch public awareness campaigns to improve the digital skills of the population.

Moreover, efficient spectrum management is important for delivering broadband services effectively. The EVC should ensure the optimal allocation and utilization of available spectrum resources, reducing interference and improving overall network quality.

The new EVC has, however, assured that he would not deviate from the president’s overall direction as he would be steadfast in meeting his Key Performance Index (KPI).

“We would not entertain anything that deviates from this direction because my key performance indicators (KPIs) are fed into the Minister’s KPIs and the President’s KPIs come from the electorate that put him into power. The Hon. Minister has said clearly that he is ready to build a robust digital infrastructure and empower three million Nigerians digitally and we have to do our best to support him in this regard,” he stated.

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