The Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, on Thursday approved MainOne Cable as the licenced infrastructure company (INFRACO) for the Lagos region.
The Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Eugene Juwah, said at the 4th Information and Communications Technology, ICT, industry Forum organised by the Ministry of Communication Technology in Lagos, that HIS, an existing INFRACO, also won the bid for the deployment of ICT infrastructure and associated equipment in the North-Central region.
According to Mr. Juwah, the plan of the Commission was to divide Nigeria into seven zones, to ensure even distribution of infrastructure across the country.
The Chairman said the NCC would soon come up with a new regulation for the new INFRACOs, adding that the bidding processes were still ongoing, while the remaining five INFRACOs would be licensed by July.
The bid process for licensing of the new infrastructure firms and the deployment of metropolitan optic fibre infrastructure and associated equipment would be done in an open access, non-discriminatory and price regulated basis.
The open access model, he said, has been examined and considered a strategic means for the deployment of optic backbone transmission infrastructure network in the country.
He said that the ultimate goal of the NCC was to bridge the current broadband gap, facilitate the deployment of local content and deliver cost effective services to households and businesses.
Mr. Juwah said that the process was expected to address the challenge of fibre deployment in towns and cities, and promote infrastructure sharing, pointing out that the process would also reduce the right of way issues and transform the beneficiary states to smart states.
“When the seven INFRACOS finally come on board, they are expected to take broadband infrastructure from the ocean and connect them to the cities and hinterland across the country to make Internet ubiquitous in Nigeria. This will in turn impact positively on the economy’” Mr. Juwah said.
Also, the Chief Executive Officer of MainOne, Funke Opeke, said that the company was excited to have won the license for the Lagos region, adding that the company was eager to deliver the benefits of the licence to Nigerians. (NAN)