BICSI Forum Harps on Increased ICT Infrastructure for Nigeria

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Emma Okonji

BICSI Group, a professional association that supports information technology systems, covering spectrum of voice, data, electronic safety and security, including project management, last week in Lagos called for the need to deepen ICT infrastructure in Nigeria, to enable the country deliver real time ICT services to its teeming populace.

Participants, who gathered for the one day forum, spoke on the need for increased ICT infrastructure for the country, owing to the high demand for ICT services from Nigerians.
Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, who was represented by the Director, Technical Standard and Network Integrity at NCC, Fidelis Onah, commended BICSI, a United States -based infrastructure company, for holding this year’s BICSI conference and exhibition in Nigeria. Although he commended the growth of mobile telecoms infrastructure in the country, he expressed dissatisfaction over the slow pace of fixed line infrastructure in the country.

According to him, “Mobile broadband infrastructure is rapidly developing in the country but that cannot be said of fixed broadband infrastructure, where the performance has been very paltry. It is clear to all that every country of the world ranking high in ICT, has a highly developed fixed line infrastructure. All traffics generated by wireless networks are quickly deposited into fixed line infrastructure, which transport the data to their routed destinations, thereby guaranteeing good quality of services.”

He therefore stressed the need for increased fixed line infrastructure in the Nigerian telecoms space.

Speaking on the importance of ICT infrastructure, especially the fixed line infrastructure, Danbatta said true broadband services were only attainable in a country when there is a robust fixed infrastructure in the international, backbone, metro and access layers within that country.
He said Nigeria is currently connected to the world through the landing of some international submarine cables like SAT 3, MainOne, Glo1 and MTN WACS, while calling on government and the private sector to collaborate in order to extend the capacities of such international cables to the hinterlands, where they are most needed.

“In addition to the deployments made by service providers, NCC, through major projects like Wire Nigeria (WIN), and State Accelerated Broadband Initiative (SABI), has facilitated the deployment of fibre infrastructure in some parts of the country. These deployments, however, do not fulfill the requirements of a fully built-out, resilient national backbone infrastructure that transverse every state and local government area of the federation,” Danbatta said.

The EVC called for effective distribution of infrastructure across the country to enable services permeate all nooks and crannies of the nation.

During a panel session, panelists pointed out that telecoms has become the most functional infrastructure in the country and the most criticised, because of perceived poor device quality occasioned by poor telecoms infrastructure in the country. They therefore called for support of telecoms infrastructure in the country.

Headquartered in Florida, USA, BICSI provides information, education and knowledge assessment for individual and companies in the Information Technology System (ITS), serving more than 23,000 ITS professionals, including designers, installers and technicians.