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Nigeria Satellite Project – A new beginning?


LET’S for a moment, imagine the globally-wired Internet Ecosystem without the Satellite? The world of tomorrow belongs to those nations who can properly harness, organize, manage and control their Intellectual Property Resources (IPR). The relevance, strategic importance and role of NIGCOMSAT (Nigeria Communications Satellite) as a significant accelerator for national development may have just begun, informed by the cloud-modeled advent of the knowledge economy and global population surge. 

   The World is going to Pluto! New Horizon flies faster than a speeding bullet. Indeed it is much faster. In 2006, NASA launched the New Horizon, a Plutonium-powered probe speeding up to 47,000 miles per hour on its 10-year journey to capture the first close-up images of Pluto and a region of the outer solar system called the Kuiper Belt. The probe has the capability to orbit so fast to reach the moon in just nine hours, a journey that took Apollo 11 three days to make in 1969! Lesson learnt is that speed has become the common currency and centre of gravity for the survivability of 21st century nations. And, this centre of gravity is dictated and measured by the capacity and capability of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) domiciled and applied to nation building. This makes Satellites strategic imperatives.

   This new strategy has now echoed at Nigcomsat and translates to acknowledging that a new ray of light and indeed a new beginning has been registered into the space segment of Nigeria Satellite initiative. Moving forward therefore, we must fashion out new a business model and dynamic structures to challenge and empower the new Management Team endowed with immeasurable capabilities and an experienced pilot at the helms of affairs to innovative. They will therefore require a constructive political will, as the core accelerator to retool, innovate and break new grounds.

   The Satellite market is currently at a high boom. Google, Facebook, Corporate Big-Multis and indeed many nations with vision are investing in Satellite and Drones business. Global Satellite industry with a revenue of about $200 billion grew three per cent in 2013, slightly outpacing both worldwide economic growth (2.4%) and U.S. growth (2.8%). Therefore, while visioning for the desired public-private-partnership model to transform Nigcomsat, existing platform must be vigorously and adequately re-engineered and empowered to make it very attractive for robust investment from the private sector.  Past learning curves, progressions and experiences garnered over the years, should be recognized as a great national asset – especially at a time like this, when the world is currently yearning for content acquisition for innovation to power development at all critical levels. However, invigorating and retooling existing structures in our Satellite Industry may require about N25billion to create maximum impact.  

   Conventional wisdom suggests that world population now estimated at about 7.38billion has grown beyond the capability of the human mind and physical intellect to manage with obsolete tools. Therefore sophisticated technology and related solutions are required to ensure the human equilibrium, in fulfilling the desire for prosperity, security and the urge for national survivability – all of which are challenged by want, poverty and wealth creation.  

   The central goal of Satellites revolves around life-Content (information, Data, Images and Sounds, etc). Corresponding 21st century studies and lessons on a large geo-physical entity such as Nigeria – with huge land mass and population – informs that the attainment of significant quality of life, constructive, prosperous and sustainable national development is only possible and measurable with the deployment of and efficient application of Communications Satellite. The role and benefit of Satellites embrace multiple national development spheres.  As we know, the primary role is to carry and reflect electronic signals – with respect to Telecommunications Satellite. However, with the advent of the Internet, Satellites have become inevitable for ensuring the determination and maximum utilization of human potentials and natural resources as well observation, recognizance and national security. 

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