Experts seek clear policy for broadband penetration
Stakeholders have urged the federal government as a matter of urgency to intervene with clear policy on operations of transmission link, as the 2018 target set by the federal government to achieve 30 percent broadband penetration draws nearer.
According to them, the major problem in broadband penetration especially taking bandwidth to the hinterland is availability of affordable transmission link which is today mainly provided by GSM operators.
They argued that waiting for the take-off of Infracos that are yet to be licensed will be counter- productive in view of short time frame government has to achieve its set target of 30 percent broadband penetration.
They said that absence of a clear policy direction on the operations of national transmission infrastructure has led to arbitral charges by owners of the infrastructure which has made it difficult for operators in cities outside of Lagos to delivery broadband services at affordable rate.
Dewole Ajao, operations manager, Bandwidth Consortium, said that the various national links are underutilized and that their owners are spending money maintaining them, which according to him is responsible for high cost been charged by them.
“An important step is for Nigerian government agencies to stop spending all that money to foreign countries in the name of buying satellite bandwidth. If we use that money to buy terrestrial bandwidth, local providers will receive more business and they can strengthen their operations,” he noted.
He attributed the use of satellite bandwidth by federal government agencies through Galaxy Backbone as part of the reasons why government is reluctant to intervene to find lasting solution to problem of national fibre link infrastructure in the country required for broadband internet.
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