Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Abuja set for Commonwealth watchdogs

The Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja is set to play host to a body of telecom watchdogs as the nation warms up for this year’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO) scheduled to hold next month, between October 6 and 10.

The Executive Vice Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Ernest Ndukwe who announced this during a chat with newsmen in Lagos recently, also disclosed that the Abuja Commonwealth Information and Communication Technology Summit ’08 incorporates the 6th Annual CTO forum, would be held between October 6 and 8.

With the theme: Ensuring Effective Rural Connectivity for a Socially Inclusive and a Commercially Vibrant Africa, the Forum, he said, would take place at Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, will bring together international delegates from 51 CTO member nations comprising policy makers, regulators, operators, financiers, academics, technology and software developers, international aid agencies and civil society organizations.

Some of the topics to be deliberated upon are: Telecom policy and regulatory challenges, next generation network and Internet Protocol (IP) development, mobile and wireless broadband, digital broadcasting, satellite networks, telecom financing, e-governance and software development amongst others.

Additionally, the summit which is one of the largest assemblies of ICT stakeholders in the world would have the first three days for exhibition while the last two days would be for the annual general meeting.

Meanwhile, the summit has attracted an array of telecom operators, equipment vendors, telecom industry associations and banks.

The event being organized by the CTO in collaboration with the Ministry of Information and Communications and the NCC, is expected to be declared open by President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua.

CTO is an international development partnership between Commonwealth and Non-Commonwealth governments as well as civil society organizations, providing the international community with effective means to help bridge the digital divide and achieve social and economic development, by delivering unique knowledge sharing programme in the use of information and communications technologies in specific areas of telecommunications, IT, broadcasting and the Internet.

The ICT summit in the West African sub-region in 2008, CTO Abuja 2008 with the theme “Ensuring Effective Connectivity for a Socially Inclusive and a Commercially Vibrant Africa”, is expected to explore Africa as a fertile emerging market for ICT business.

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