Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission(NCC) says over 30 million Nigerians don’t have access to the internet.
Danbatta disclosed this on Thursday in Abuja at the Broadband Technical Awareness Forum for Governors organised by NCC, where he also explained that over 30 million Nigerians are not connected to the internet due to infrastructural deficit.
He explained that nations with leading broadband infrastructure are those with the highest Gross Domestic Product(GDP) per capita
He said:” When you take a look at the Global Broadband Infrastructure Ecosystem, you will find that the leading broadband infrastructure nations are those with the highest GDP per capita. They include Japan, South Korea, Sweden, Finland, France, Britain and the United States of America. These countries have a GDP per capita between 50,000 to 60,000 dollars.
“With a GDP of over $500 billion, Nigeria has a GDP per capita of only $2,000.With $2000 GDP per capita, we are very close to the bottom in the broadband Infrastructure Ecosystem.”
Danbatta, who solicited the cooperation and support of the state governments in the provision of broadband infrastructure across the country, said broadband penetration cannot be achieved in Nigeria without the support of states.
He explained that with adequate broadband infrastructure, there will be efficient management, control and use of energy, delivery of health services to the citizenry, guarantee of best and quality education, streamline of the transportation system, better management of the environment as well as meeting the Sustainable Development Goals(GDP), among others.
Speaking, Prof. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy pointed out that broadband penetration is no longer a luxury but a necessity in Nigeria.
He noted that the deployment of broadband infrastructure would enhance the security, education and economic growth of States.
He urged the governors to cooperate with the Federal Government to deepen broadband penetration in line with the implementation of the National Broadband Plan.
He implored the state governments to create enabling environment through the provision of the Right of Ways as well as avoid multiple taxations to telecom providers.
In his remarks, the Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, said information and communication technology enables a smarter governance system, adding that broadband penetration cuts down the cost of governance in the state.
Obaseki said through one of the initiatives of the state government tagged “Edo Best”, over 15,000 teachers have been provided with tablets for teaching.
He assured that before he leaves office, all the operations of the state will be automated.