Thursday, March 01, 2012

FG to leverage ICT infrastructure for e-inclusive

Mrs. Johnson, ICT Minister
The Federal Government has reiterated its resolve to leverage on Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) infrastructure for e-inclusion, which has the capability to spur development.

The Minister of Communications Technology, Mrs. Omobola Johnson gave this indication at the 2012 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona at the Government Mobile Forum session in a paper entitled “Harnessing Mobile Broadband for the Greater Good.”

According to a press statement made available to ITRealms Online by the Special Adviser to the Minister on Media and Publicity, Mrs. Efem Nkanga, the federal government would leverage the power of ICT infrastructure to enable economic, inclusive and social development in the country.

She stressed that her Ministry was intervening and working on a number of initiatives that would reduce the digital divide within the country and ensure that no Nigerian is excluded from the power of ICTs irrespective of geographical location, gender or income levels.

Also, she said that the Ministry would enable inclusive development by creating the right enabling environment through effective private public sector collaborations to bring critical ICTs to all Nigerians.

Emphasising that a process of ensuring that underserved and rural areas are included in the development process is currently being vigorously pursued through ICTs.

Mrs. Johnson noted at the forum organised by the GSM Association which promotes mobile technology as a veritable tool for connecting the unconnected, she said that her Ministry was working to remove the barriers that work against inclusive development in the country.

Alluding to the fact that mobile phone is a great device that most Nigerians currently deploy to stay connected, Johnson explained that the mobile platform provides endless opportunities and possibilities for development for Nigerians that needs to be harnessed in terms of using mobile communication devices as enablers of development.
Toure, scribe ITU

She said that Nigeria currently has over 95 million subscribers leading to a situation where Nigerians have mobile phones than bank account accounts.

On mobile broadband access, she restated that mobile broadband is important for Nigeria and pointing out the need for Nigeria to have enough spectrum to accelerate broadband development.

Further, she said that because Nigeria has not had a viable incumbent to provide the needed fixed infrastructure, network providers have had to build their own infrastructure.

In addition, she said that the country was currently in the process of facilitating the roll out of infrastructure that will enable rural access.

On mobile broadband access, Johnson said that mobile broadband is important for Nigeria, adding that Nigeria needs enough spectrums to deliver critical services over the broadband infrastructure.

She explained that a mixture of fibre, satellite and mobile infrastructure will be deployed by Nigeria to achieve its set objectives.

She said that spectrum will be used in a most efficient way to get more people connected to critical data that will engender development in the area of health, education and agriculture.

Earlier, Secretary General of the ITU, Dr. Hamadoun Toure said that the world has witnessed massive transformation made possible by mobile revolution.

He noted that broadband infrastructure must be considered a critical infrastructure that will facilitate global development. He added that one of the keys that will massively increase progress in broadband will be mobile.

Toure also said that efforts were on to make mobile broadband a key economic driver across the globe by ensuring that issues of policy, affordability and uptake are taken care of to facilitate broadband penetration to even the remotest areas.

Remmy Nweke

ITREALMS Online ... delivering news for ICT4D

1 comment:

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