Lagos, ALTON agreement on smart city initiative expires
The memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Lagos state government and Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) as part of efforts to mitigate the challenges hindering the roll-out of telecommunications facilities across its domain has expired, making way for arbitrary charges by the authorities if not renewed.
The agreement expired last year December after completing its two years’ duration with provision for renewal.
It would be recalled that ALTON in 2014 signed an agreement with Lagos State Infrastructure Maintenance and Regulatory Agency (LASMIRA), and the State Ministry of Science and Technology by that MoU the approval fee for ‘right of way’ approvals was slashed by 85% to allow operators build quality network for effective service deliver for the benefit of Lagosians.
Confirming the expiration of the agreement, Engr. Gbenga Adebayo, chairman, ALTON, said that: ‘though our agreement with Lagos State government on smart city initiative expired in December 2015, but we have agreed with LASIMRA that the terms of that agreement should subsist in respect of our members seeking right of way approval till when the parties involved are able to come together to review and renew it.
On why MainOne an InfraCo operator is facing difficulty in securing Right of Way approval from the state, Adebayo, said that it is their general understanding that there should not be differential treatment between ALTON members and InfraCo operator who is not a member of ALTON.
“InfraCo operator is by extension member of ALTON, therefore should enjoy the benefit of the MoU. We don’t expect different treatment for infraCo operator,” he said.
He noted that his association is not aware of the challenges MainOne is facing with LASMIRA on ‘right of way’ issues.
When contacted, Mrs. Olasunbo, public relation officer, LASMIRA said that she will ‘get details and get back to us’ on why her agency was treating MainOne different from ALTON members.
She did not as at the time of going to press.
Also, MainOne did not respond to email by our correspondent to Adekunle Dalton-Oke, the brand and communications manager for comments on the issue.