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5G spectrum: NCC to auction two slots Monday

5G spectrum: NCC to auction two slots Monday
December 11
07:44 2021

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) says it has successfully carried out a mock session for the 3.5 gigahertz (GHz) spectrum auction for the deployment of the fifth generation (5G) network in the country.

In a statement on Friday signed by Ikechukwu Adinde, NCC’s public affairs director, the commission said the conduct of the simulation exercise was in line with the requirements stipulated in the information memorandum (IM) for the 3.5 GHz spectrum auction.

The NCC said the simulated auction, which took place on Friday, December 10, 2021, at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, was preparatory to the main auction scheduled to take place on Monday, December 13, 2021, at the same venue.

Using the ascending clock auction system for the mock session, the three qualified bidders for the 3.5 GHz spectrum, namely: MTN Nigeria, Mafab Communications Ltd, and Airtel Networks Ltd, participated in the software-based simulated auction exercise.

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To ensure a fail-proof process, the commission said it also simulated the manual process of the auction, aside from the electronic process.

It explained that bidders need to be familiar with the manual auction in case of any circumstances on the main auction day that may warrant a need to switch to the manual auction.

Speaking during the event, Umar Danbatta, executive vice-chairman of NCC, said the commission had taken all necessary steps to ensure due diligence on the credibility of the consultants and to safeguard the integrity of the software.

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“This is consistent with the open, credible, transparent, and fair manner by which the Commission is known to have conducted previous auction processes, which have been locally and globally applauded,” Adinde quoted Danbatta as saying.

Following the mock auction, the NCC said the stage is set to license two slots in the 3.5 GHz spectrum band which is expected to be picked by successful bidders at the end of the main auction on Monday.

The commission added that the main auction would mark a turning point in Nigeria’s determination to harness the benefits of 5G for the nation’s socio-economic growth, as a concrete roll-out of 5G commences in 2022.

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