NCC awaits board’s sanctioning of 2017 infrastructure licensing

The licensing of the remaining five infrastructure companies (InfraCos) and spectrum for this year is dependent on the resolution of the newly inaugurated board of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

The Guardian reliably learnt that a document had been developed in respect of the InfraCos but the implementation is subject to the decision of the board. However, everything concerning Lagos and North Central InfraCos ended last year.

In a similar way to the distribution companies (DISCOS) and generation companies (GENCOS) of the power sector, the InfraCos ensure the spread of ubiquitous broadband services nationwide.

Once sanctioned, NCC would complete the auctioning of the remaining eight slots of the 2.6GHz spectrum licence.

Besides, the commission is to work on auctioning of the 70/80 GHz spectrum bands, just as it is also expected to oversee that of 700/800MHz digital dividend spectrum, which moves from the broadcasters to the telecoms operators after the July 17, 2017 Digital Switch Over (DSO) date in the country.

The board, which had been charged by the Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu, to improve the quality of service nationwide, is chaired by Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye. The membership includes the commission’s Executive Vice Chairman/Chief Executive, Prof. Umar Danbatta; Executive Commissioner, Technical Services, Ubale Maska and Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management, Sunday Dare.

The non-executive commissioners on the board are Clement Omeiza Baiye and Senator Ifeanyi Ararume.

Meanwhile, Lagos infrastructure company licencee, MainOne, is to undertake service roll out next month.

On the other hand, the licensee for North Central, IHS Consortium, kept sealed lips about its deployment date for the region.

Their services are expected to bring ubiquitous broadband to Lagos and 60 cities across the North Central.

In a chat with The Guardian, MainOne’s Chief Executive Officer, Funke Opeke, explained the delay in the roll out.

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