The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) says Nigeria needs over 120,000 kilometres of metropolitan fibre networks interconnected across the country to achieve its goal of pervasive broadband penetration.
Umar Danbatta, executive vice chairman of the commission, who disclosed this in Abuja, said only 38,000 kilometres had been covered so far.
He also called for the implementation of harmonised right of way (RoW) charges.
He spoke while receiving a delegation from Nigeria Industrial Policy and Competitiveness Advisory Council led by Edirin Akemu.
Danbatta called on the federal government to ensure that all the 36 states governments of the federation adhere to the resolution of national economic council on the right of way charges, which stipulates N145 per meter for laying fibre network in every part of the country.
“The Right of Way issue is something that refuses to go away despite the existence of a document guiding what should be charged. Currently, nobody is complying with the provision of that document,” he lamented.
“We cannot compel the state governments to charge N145 per meter for fibre. The federal government can, however, meet with the governors and extract a commitment from them, to ensure that NEC’s provision is strictly adhered to.”
Danbatta also called for more information and communications technology (ICT) capacity building in the country in order to fully take advantage of the digital transformation that is taking place in the world.
“He argued that while Nigeria strives to build the needed ICT infrastructure, the efforts will be in vain “if there is no critical mass of ICT adoption and use to drive the digital revolution.”