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NCC Calls For Innovative Partnership To Improve Telecom Sector

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has called for better and more innovative public private telecom partnership (PPP) approaches that would make Nigeria’s telecommunications infrastructure safer, resilient, more robust and to attract more investment into the sector.

Executive vice chairman, NCC, professor Umaru Danbatta stated this during his keynote speech yesterday at the 2021 virtual conference and exhibition on information and communications technology and telecommunications (ICTEL) organised by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI).

Speaking on the sub-theme tagged: ‘Exploring Public Private Collaboration for a Robust Digital Infrastructure, Regulations, Investment and Policy,’ Danbatta said there is no gainsaying the fact that the next frontier for enriching digital economy globally, is through sustained investment in broadband or high-speed Internet access.

He reiterated that the Commission is committed to continuously engage relevant stakeholders, both in the public and private sectors, in the country and beyond, in order to ensure that appropriate infrastructure befitting a modern digital economy system is available in the country to deepen government’s determination and commitment to total digital transformation of services in the country.

The EVC revealed that in a concrete expression of belief in the centrality of PPP principles, the NCC, in November 2020, created a ‘PPP Unit’ as a division under its Special Duties Department. The unit is overseeing the implementation of the NCC’s revenue assurance solutions (RAS) as well as the Device Management System (DMS) project.

“The two projects are being implemented in collaboration with private sector players. While the RAS is intended to address the revenue leakages accruable to the government, through the NCC; the DMS is intended to address the issue of type approval of telecom equipment and devices to ensure originality and standardisation because of the implication of substandard devices for health and quality of service.

“The DMS is also instituted to tackle the problem of SIM boxing and call masking, which not only constitutes threat to national security but also a mark of anti-competitive practice in the telecoms sector and a basis for loss of revenue in tax remittances to the government,” he added.

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