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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Airtel backs WAFICT, enters deal for 3G phone

The build up for the celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Nigerian Telecom Revolution got a boost with Airtel Nigeria, a leading telecommunications services provider, declaring its participation at a major platform to mark the event, the West African ICT Congress, as platinum sponsor.

This is coming as the acclaimed fifth largest telecommunication operator in the world, Airtel has entered talks with major mobile handset manufacturers to launch the Third Generation (3G)-enabled handsets below the price of $100.

Chief Executive Officer, Airtel Nigeria, Mr. Rajan Swaroop, who has already been confirmed as a lead speaker at the conference.

“Airtel would like to use the opportunity that the WAFICT Congress provides to join the government and people of Nigeria in celebrating the 10th anniversary of the telecom revolution in the country, which it pioneered on August 5th, 2001 as the first operator to launch commercial service in Nigeria,” he said.

Over the years, Swaroop said, that the enviable track record of being the best in terms of customer service, which is really the major differentiator in a market that offers virtually the same services.

“We see a great need to continue to give to the Nigerian people the best services ever, to put smiles on their faces, to help enhance their lives socially, economically, educationally and in all aspects that will make them experience life in its best possible ways. Indeed Airtel is committed to giving Nigerians the freedom to live and actualise their dreams,” Mr. Swaroop.

WAFICT Congress 2011, to be held in Lagos from June 14-16, alongside the 11th edition of West Africa’s leading ICT exhibition, the West African International Telecommunications and Information Communication Technology exhibition (W.Afri.Tel), is already attracting national and international endorsements, interest and star-studded speaker line up.

WAFICT Congress 2011 is being organised by Africa’s foremost ICT magazine, IT & Telecom Digest, in conjunction with the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO). Chief Executive of the CTO, Dr. Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, commented on the Airtel’s sponsorship:

“Airtel has exhibited by this sponsorship of the WAFICT 2011, its seriousness and commitment to the telecom industry in Nigeria and indeed, Africa and the world. Airtel also thereby exhibits a readiness to not only deliver on its promise on quality services, but to also support the telecom industry to grow and to support activities of government that encourage continues growth of the telecom sector and the economy in general. This is a commendable step,” he said.

On his part, Mr. Mkpe Abang, Editor-in-Chief of IT & Telecom Digest, said, as a frontline global telecommunications operator, Airtel has confirmed its focus as an operator that values its customers, its environment and its areas of operations.

“By sponsoring and participating at WAFICT 2011, Airtel will be contributing immensely towards stimulating discourse that will take the Nigerian telecom industry to the next level,” he said, stressing that Airtel have no doubt that to continue to deliver the goodness promise to its teeming subscribers.

He recalled that the Minister of Information and Communications, Mr. Labaran Maku, had issued a formal letter endorsing the WAFICT Congress and W.Afri.Tel exhibition as the platform to celebration the Nigerian telecom revolution, and urged mobile companies, ISPs, government agencies and establishments, telecom operators as well as all other stakeholders, to support the events and join the ministry in giving a voice to Nigeria’s achievements in telecom.

In the letter, entitled ‘To whom it may concern - Celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Nigerian Telecom Revolution: Special West African ICT Congress 2011, by IT & Telecom Digest’, endorsing the two events, which run concurrently, from June 14-16, 2011, at the new Eko Expo Hall, Lagos, the minister stated:

“I am writing to confirm that the Federal Ministry of Information and Communications endorses and recommends IT & Telecom Digest Magazine to organise the West African ICT Congress 2011, as part of the 10th Anniversary Celebration of the Nigerian Telecom Revolution.

“The publication will celebrate the progress that has been made during the past one decade in the Nigerian telecom industry. In doing so, IT & Telecom Digest will host the WAFICT Congress 2011, of which the Ministry is in full support and will participate fully. This is important to further open up our country to the rest of the world as the investment destination for telecom in Africa.

“In this regard, the Federal Ministry of Information and Communications officially endorses WAFICT Congress, which is being hosted alongside the 11th W.Afri.Tel Exhibition, in Eko Hotel, Lagos, June 14 16, 2011, and the Ministry hereby urges all businesses, companies, professionals, all stakeholders, government agencies, etc, to lend their support to the events and join us in celebrating this happy milestone: Ten Years of the Nigerian Telecom Revolution 2001 – 2011.”

Remmy Nweke:
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