The Minister of Communication Technology, Mrs. Omobola Johnson at the official launch of the “Broadband Campaign” themed ‘Connected Nigeria’ held recently in Lagos, has revealed that the Federal Government of Nigeria plans to double the investment in the Information Communication Telecommunication (ICT) sector from $25 billion level to $50 billion in the coming years.
Mrs. Johnson said that pursuant to achieving this target, the Ministry and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) have been going round the world selling the ICT sector to the international investing public. “We need $25 billion more in the next few years into the country. As I speak with you, the NCC is going around, as the ministry also does, to win more investors into the country to boost broadband penetration in Nigeria,” she told the press at the Oriental Hotel, Lekki, Lagos, the venue of the briefing.
The Federal Government is seeking for the needed $25 billion investment from the country’s private sector and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).
The minister noted that although the broadband penetration in Nigeria stands at about 6-7%, the ministry is working with all stakeholders to ensure that the National Broadband Plan 2013-2018 is implemented. The Broadband council was set up in 2013 to that effect; and tireless work is being done with the help of state governments and other stakeholders to remove the technical, financial and environmental difficulties facing quicker broadband roll-out across the country.
She is optimistic that the ICT sector will contribute more than its current 8% to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Nigeria’s economy, if the hurdles in operators’ way are removed. She also says that the broadband campaign is aimed at making Nigerians aware of “what can happen when you have broadband access and what can happen when you use broadband” and is targeted at individual internet users and sensitise end users on cyber security and online protection, among others.