The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), has announced that broadband penetration of networks in Nigeria presently stands at 47.01 per cent.
The Chief Executive Officer Professor Umar Danbatta, said this recently during a special media engagement held in Kano. He also noted that the commission was on a steady move to meet the 70 per cent penetration target in 2025. He was optimistic that the speed of the network would hit 50 per cent before the end of 2023.
The NCC Boss who took time to reel out model achievements recorded in the last eight years at the helm of affairs, expressed satisfaction that the telecom sector takes the second lead among top contributors to National Gross Domestic Products GDP with a cumulative figure of 16 per cent at the end of the third quarter.
Although the commission witnessed a drop in foreign direct investments (FDI’s) into the inflow falling by almost 50 per cent in 2022, Danbatta disclosed that NCC generated US$900 million into Federal government coffers from the proceeds of 5G action towards the end of last year.
The Executive Vice Chairman, of the commission, stated that 220 million Nigerians now use a mobile telephone while 160 million subscribe to the internet with tele density stood at 115.70 per cent.
Professor Danbatta who gave an account of his stewardship from 2015 when he was appointed as Chief Executive, said he had recorded 119 milestones from the strategic management plan and vision plan sect.
He stated that the first five years’ vision had yielded significant progress, especially in the area of broadband penetration, improved quality service and optimum delivery as well as empowerment and protection of customer relations.
According to him, the strategic goals which were subsequently reviewed as building block to further consolidate the efforts of the commission has further enhanced efficient regulation and development of telecommunications.
Concerning the broadband penetration Danbatta said “On the broadband penetration, NCC has significantly exceeded expectations in the areas of penetration and spectrum coverage. Broadband penetration now hit 47.01 per cent. Although the new national policy on broadband has set a target of 70 per cent by 2025, I can assure you that NCC is working hard to exceed the target.
“Again, let me inform you that 220 million Nigerians now use mobile phones and 160 million Nigerians have subscribed to the internet. Already, the Information and Telecommunications is contributing 16 per cent to GDP”, he added.
Some of the issues resolved, he said, include the impediment on interconnect debt disputes between mobile network operators and the unresolved development of Unstructured Supplementary Service Data USSD, which created an impasse between telecom operators and financial institutions.
Danbatta equally emphasized the impact of the commission on academic development through investment in research and intellectual growth across public universities in the country. He said over N500 million has been spent on research grant and endowments in the areas of telecommunications development.