The Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (EVC/CEO) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, has joined His Excellency, Babacar Matar Ndiaye, the Ambassador of the Republic of Senegal to Nigeria, to hoist the flag of Senegal at the Secretariat of West Africa Telecommunications Regulators Assembly (WATRA), in Abuja recently.
Danbatta, who was also the Chairman of the Executive Council of WATRA, stated that the event was of such profound significance that it transcends the physical hoisting of the flag, noting that “it symbolises the cohesion taking place in WATRA” and giving concrete and louder expression to collaboration and cooperation among member states of the regional telecom regulatory body.
Prof. Danbatta also said that the increasing demonstration of cooperation and cohesion by WATRA member states signifies unflinching commitment to harnessing ICT resources to improve the quality of life of the people of the sub-region, noting that ICT remains an enabler for bridging the gaps in the pathway to development.
Strengthening Danbatta’s position, Ambassador Ndiaye, who is Senegal’s Permanent Representative to ECOWAS, described the ceremony as a happy occasion , and noted that it was gratifying to gather at WATRA Secretariat to hoist the flag of Senegal alongside those of other member states.
He said Senegal has never relented in making remarkable contributions to ECOWAS and other regional bodies and indicated his country’s readiness to work within the political and economic framework of ECOWAS to streamline challenges facing regulators like WATRA.
Ambassador Ndiaye further stated that among the key challenges regulators face are the emergent Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, the convergence of networks and applications, the imperative of infrastructure sharing and the increasing needs of telecom consumers, dynamics of financial services, and electronic commerce in general. Ndiaye asserted that the telecom regulator is central to the acceleration of growth in other sectors of the economy and therefore occupies a significant place in the socioeconomic space.
He looked forward to continued collaboration to address the myriads of challenges in the telecom sector, and noted that the outbreak of Covid-19 and the envisioned post-Covid-19 relations have compounded the challenges of telecom regulation.
The Senegalese envoy seized the opportunity of the occasion to convey the gratitude of the Government and people of Senegal to the Federal Government of Nigeria for hosting WATRA, and thanked the NCC for the support it has continued to offer WATRA and for promoting greater cooperation among member states towards harnessing the benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
NCC Fixes Dec 13 As Final Auction Date For 3.5 GHz
The deployment of 5G is expected to happen in Quarter 1 of next year, according to the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.
The deadline for submission of bids and Initial Bid Deposits (IBDs) closed yesterday at 5pm.
A terse statement by the commission titled “Second Trial of 5G in Nigeria in order to validate the National Policy on 5G for Digital Economy” said, “The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) is to supervise the 2nd 5G PoC trial in Nigeria. This trial will be conducted by Airtel Networks Limited and its Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) on Thursday, December 2, 2021”.
The statement urged concerned parties to contact Spectrum Administration Department for further details.
It would be recalled that the NCC had extended the submission of bids for the 5G technology spectrum from November 24 to November 29 due to challenges posed to air travels.
The commission said in a statement by its Director of Public Affairs, DrIkechukwuAdinde, that the extension was due to challenges posed by air travels in recent times.
The submission of responses in respect of the 3.5 gigahertz (Gigahertz) Spectrum Band auction was scheduled to close November 24, 2021, it said.
“However, due to the challenges posed to air travels as witnessed recently and considering that it may have some impact on intending bidders regarding the submission of their bids, the commission hereby extends the deadline for submission of bids and Initial Bid Deposits (IBDs) to 5.00 pm on Monday, November 29, 2021”, NCC explained.
It said all other events as scheduled in the Information Memorandum remain unchanged.
MTN Nigeria was the first in West Africa to try 5G technology and applications. It was a product of a strong collaboration between the Ministry of Communications Technology and Digital Economy, NCC, MTN and Huawei (Abuja), ZTE (Calabar) and Ericsson (Lagos).
By: King Onunwor
9Mobile Delights Customers With Special Offers
With the TikTok data offer, 9mobile customers will enjoy three times more data value for the same price daily, weekly and monthly, depending on their preference.
The exciting deal, a unique partnership between 9mobile and TikTok, will see customers get between 100MB and 12GB data plans at very affordable rates.
For the weekly variants, customers get a 2GB Tiktok Data plan for N500, valid for seven days, or a 1GB TikTok Data plan for N300, also valid for seven days.
For the monthly bundles, subscribers can get a massive 12Gb Tiktok Data plan for N2,000, while they enjoy a 5GB Tiktok Data plan at N1,000 only.
Commenting on the offer, the Director of Product Innovation and Business Development, 9mobile, KenechukwuOkonkwo, disclosed that it would enable Nigerians to freely express themselves on the popular social media platform.
“TikTok has become hugely popular among Nigerians. It is the number one video-sharing app, so we want to enable our customers to enjoy the platform without worrying about their data. Our goal is to provide affordable data plans to all our customers so they can experience more on the platform”, he said.
Okonkwo added that 9mobile wanted its customers to get exceptional value for their money by enjoying TikTok contents while saving on their mobile internet usage cost.
The telecommunications company promised to continue to transform lives with its consistent innovation that will enable Nigerians to achieve their full potentials.
NITDA, NEPC Partner On $4.7tn Digital Service Exportation
This alliance was in line with the Digital Innovation and Entrepreneurship Pillar of the NITDA’s 2021-2024 Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan (SRAP) recently launched.
This was made known at a press briefing by the outgoing NEPC Executive Director, Mr Segun Awolowo, to commemorate the consolidation and partnership between the two organisations.
The NITDA Director-General, Mallam Kashifu Inuwa, who was represented at the event by the Acting Director, Corporate Planning and Strategy, Dr Aristotle Onumo, said that the partnership was aimed at facilitating the exportation of digital services.
He pointed out that more partnerships of such nature from the public and private sectors would bring out synergy, exchange of ideas and knowledge sharing among them.
Inuwaemphasised that the digital innovation and entrepreneurship pillar of SRAP would enable NITDA to collaborate with relevant stakeholders in the exportation of indigenous services.
“It would not have been so for NITDA to collaborate with sister agencies that have similar visions to drive the digital economy to its rightful place in Nigeria”, he said.
Another respondent, whose name was given only as MrAwolowo, noted that the partnership has provided about N150 million support grants to innovation hubs across three geopolitical zones in the country.
“We are also providing support to drive advocacy to ensure that Nigerian Start-up Bill is passed by the end of the year”, he added.
He said further that due to the level of inter-agency collaboration between NITDA and NEPC, they had been able to attend to all areas of services, from regulatory challenges to access to market and finance, skills gaps, and most importantly digital infrastructure.
Some of the achievements of the partnership include the Outsource Nigeria Initiative, financial interventions for six start-ups, support to three innovation hubs, setting up of skills acceleration centres and advocacy support for the Nigerian Start-up Bill.
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