FG sets January 2022 for deployment of 5G in Nigeria

The Federal Government has announced that the Five Generation (5G) network will be deployed across the country by January 2022.

This was announced by the minister of communication and digital economy, Isa Pantami, at a Town Hall Meeting in Maiduguri organized by the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture to address vandalism of power and telecommunications infrastructure on Thursday.

Pantami, who was represented by Mr Ubale Maska, Commissioner for Technical Services, Nigeria Communication Commission, said while the technology would boost surveillance against criminal elements vandalising public infrastructure across the country, other measures should be put in place to arrest them and bring them to book.

The minister noted that the deployment of modern technology will make the management of the over 50,000 telecommunication sites across the country which has been difficult to manually man.

He also disclosed that there were about 16,000 reported outages by mobile network operators like MTN, Globacom, Airtel and 9Mobile between January 2021 and July 2021.

He noted that the outages were caused by fiber cuts, access denial and theft leading to service disruption in the affected areas adding that the protection of the critical infrastructural facility was key to the nation’s security, economic vitality, public health and safety.

He decried the situation where telecoms installations that were destroyed in the attacks by terrorists, had not been replaced as a result of the lingering insecurity and tensions in parts of the North East.

As a way forward, the minister recommended continuous stakeholders buying-in and synergy among security forces.

He also urged the National Assembly to expedite the passage of the Critical Infrastructure Protection Bill for onward submission to the President for assent.

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