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FG banks on TV white spaces for rural connectivity


Olusola Teniola, President, Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria ( left); Josephine Amuwa, Director, Corporate Planning Strategy and Risk Management, NCC; Abdul-Raheem Adebayo Shittu, Honourable Minister of Communications Technology, Istifanus Musa Mik Fuktur, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Communications Technology during a Stakeholders Consultative Forum on Television White Space, held recently.

The federal government has approved the use of TV White Space (TVWS), as a new technology in a bid to extend broadband internet coverage, especially to rural communities and other far-flung communities, according to Adebayo Shittu, minister of minister of Communications.

TV White Space is an opportunistic technology that takes advantage of the portion of the spectrum that the primary service is not using at a particular point in time. Shittu, stated this while delivering an address at the commencement of the 2019 Stakeholders Forum on rural connectivity using TV White Spaces & Global conference for rural communications in Africa (GCRCA-19) and noting that the use of TV White space will drive spectrum efficiency in the country.

‘‘The use of TV White Space (TVWS) is now an emerging trend to further bridge the digital divide, to transmit data over long distances and reach underserved rural communities. This would drive up spectrum efficiency, and I hope other countries would learn from our move too.

‘‘Long before the adoption of the United Nation-MDGs in 2000, Nigeria understood the importance of solving this matter. And ever since, we have adopted a national broadband plan and worked relentlessly to attain our objectives.‘‘Broadband is considered a central pillar in Nigeria’s ICT Roadmap. We have ambitious plan to fast-track deployment of the broadband infrastructure, increased national capacity building, awareness, as well as increased the opportunities for content development and innovations.’’

He however, pointed out that achieving effective coverage across rural areas is a matter that requires the right transmission technology.
‘‘Nigeria’s policy in the telecommunication field is development oriented, neutral and transparent. We welcome all technologies, and we support all corporations whether local or foreign, provided they comply with our laws, policies and regulations.‘‘I look at the service due to disadvantaged people; to underserved or even unserved people, as a sacred duty and a noble goal. For a public official, lifting the poor from their poverty is more important than anything else.


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