Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (EVC/CEO) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Aminu Maida, has said the support of the Commission awaits law-abiding investors like Meta, (formerly Facebook), which responds positively to Nigeria’s desire for investments that promote the agenda of government to achieve a robust digital economy.
Maida, who spoke when he received a delegation of Meta, led by Kojo Boakye, the company’s Vice President for Africa, the Middle-East and Turkey, when they visited NCC’s headquarters in Abuja, said the regulatory support to all investors, including operators in Nigeria, will be predicated on their playing by the rules and regulations guiding the sector.
He said the Commission places a lot of premium on compliance to industry laws, regulations and guidelines as such will also engender a level-playing field for all licensees and other stakeholders in the industry for sustaining a healthy competition and guaranteeing a sustainable growth in the Nigerian telecoms sector.
Boakye informed NCC boss that the purpose of the visit was to congratulate the EVC on his appointment by the President and to intimate him of ongoing efforts to land 2Africa Cable in Nigeria.
At 45,000 kilometres long, Boakye said the 2Africa submarine cable will be one of the world’s largest subsea cable projects and will interconnect Europe (eastward via Egypt), Asia (via Saudi Arabia), and Africa.
He said the system will go live in 2023, delivering more than the total combined capacity of all subsea cables currently serving Africa, with a design capacity of up to 180 terabytes per second (Tbps).
Boakye stated that 2Africa will deliver much-needed Internet capacity and reliability across large parts of Africa, supplement the fast-growing capacity demand in the Middle East and underpin further growth of 4G, 5G and fixed broadband access for billions of people, especially in Nigeria.
He solicited NCC’s support in sailing through all necessary legal and regulatory hurdles in landing the submarine cable to complement existing backbone infrastructure in Nigeria.
He also said Meta, through a consortium, plans to land 2Africa cable simultaneously in Lagos and Akwa-Ibom States “in order to ensure those not yet connected are connected while those already connected are given opportunity for enhanced and affordable access.”