By Ossom Raphael
The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Executive Vice Chairman, Prof Umar Garba Danbatta, on Monday said the sum of N80 billion so far paid by MTN Nigeria.
Prof. Danbatta disclosed this in Abuja during questions and answers session after presenting progress report on his One Year in office as NCC EVC.
He said a letter was transmitted to Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), to transfer the money to the NCC’s account with the CBN.
“We have written a letter to the AGF and Minister of Justice to remit the N80billion so far paid, out of N330bn total fine, by MTN into the NCC’s account domiciled at the CBN for onward transmission to Consolidated Revenue Account of the Federal Government”, he said.
The NCC Boss, while presenting his eight-point agenda progress, said the country’s Broadband Penetration has reached 20.95 per cent.
“The active mobile broadband penetration released by the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development shows that Nigeria has reached a penetration of 20.95 per cent.
“On the percentage of internet penetration, the country has reached a milestone of 47.44 per cent, second to South Africa in the continent,” he said.
Prof. Danbatta said the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development was set up by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and UNESCO in 2010.
He said the provision of the National Broadband Plan that had a set target of 30 per cent penetration from 2013 to 2018, also accentuated emphasis on broadband penetration.
He said the commission was set up with the aim of boosting the importance of broadband on the international policy agenda and expanding its access in every country.
The NCC boss said that the commission was also set up as a key strategy in accelerating progress towards national and international development targets.
“We have been able to articulate a regulatory framework that will enable strategic and systematic licensing and deployment of broadband infrastructure across the country.
“A broadband implementation monitoring committee has also been established within the commission to give proper assessment on regular basis of broadband infrastructure deployment.
“These steps are critical success factors, which we have identified and primed for various broadband initiatives.’’
Mr. Danbatta said that the commission had been able to fine tune the infrastructure provision licenses awarded for Lagos and North central zones.
He said the commission had already advertised the bidding and selection process for interested service providers in the remaining five zones designed for effective coverage of the nation under the Open Access Model.
While speaking on spectrum and broadband penetration, the NCC boss, who was flanked by five directors and an executive commissioner, said more than N47bn was realised in spectrum usage and licensing in the last one year.
“Through efficient monitoring and value-driven usage of spectrum for provision of different types of service, revenue generation for the Federal Government through frequency allocation and renewal fees have improved from the previous years. More than N47billion was realized in spectrum usage and licensing within the period under review”, he revealed.
The broadband penetration in the country is 20.95 % and 47.44 % internet penetration, making Nigeria second in terms of internet penetration in Africa—second only to South Africa.
According to him, NCC has initiated processes for licensing of more broadband services on the 5.4GHz spectrum band and also opened the process for the allocation of frequencies in the 70/80GHz band.
On quality of service, he said a high level task force on QOS had been set up to identify all the issues militating against quality of service in the neworks.