The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has appealed to service providers in the telecommunications industry to collaborate with state governments in addressing the challenges of providing ICT infrastructure, particularly on the issue of Right of Way (RoW).
The Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, made the appeal during a virtual forum on Right of Way and Planning Permits for Mast and Towers in Nigeria.
The forum was put together by the NCC and the Digital Access Programme of the British Government’s Prosperity Fund.
Danbatta who was represented by Adekeke Adewolu, NCC’s Executive Commissioner for Stakeholders Management, pledged the commission’s commitment to reforming the administration of Right of Way in Nigeria.
He said, “In maximizing the benefits of digital transformation, resilient Telecoms Infrastructure is the key enabler in delivering ICT services. Therefore, this technical conference is apt, as it provides effective solutions to Right of Way (RoW) challenges amongst others.”
Danbatta was of the view that, “the input of this conference will assist the Government in further reducing the encumbrances bedeviling ICT infrastructure, especially in the provision/ building of resilient fixed Infrastructure in the federation.”
He said, “Equally, this event will further assist in our quest to deepen broadband deployment and penetration in Nigeria.
“Furthermore, ubiquitous broadband will propel social and economic development and growth of citizens, as in; local content development & innovations, the proliferation of ICT industries, building digital skills, etc.”
The NCC on its part, Danbatta said, “is ready to collaborate with the UK Government Prosperity Fund-Nigeria Project, especially on the subject matter of today, i.e. reforming the administration of RoW and planning permits in Nigeria.”
He noted the short, medium, and long-term actions set up in the report and promising to work assiduously to their achievement. He said, “We also, encourage our service providers to appreciate some of the challenges faced by the state government and hope this will enable them to collaborate with the state government to effectively overcome the challenges.”
The Commission thanked the UK Government Prosperity Fund Digital Access Project team for organizing the event.
Other than, industry stakeholders from both the public and private sector, officials from the Prosperity Fund, participants in the forum included, the Minister of Communications, Isa Pantami and the governors of Ekiti, Katsina, Sokoto, Imo, Plateau and Kwara.