Umar Danbatta
Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Danbatta

Emma Okonji

As part of efforts to reposition the Nigeria Internet Group, the new executive council of the group recently began courtesy calls on some heads of ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) of the federal government.

Among the agencies visited included the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the National Information Development Agency (NITDA) and National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).

While at the NCC, the President of the group gave the Executive Vice Chairman of the Commission, Prof. Umar Danbatta, who was represented by the Director, New Media and Information Security at NCC, Haru Alhassan, a brief insight into the essence of the visit.

Alhassan assured the group of NCCs commitment to explore such partnerships that will help the Commission to achieve its set mandate.

He also promised the NIG of the commission’s willingness to collaborate with the group to foster internet growth as a way of expanding synergies with stakeholders in the telecoms ecosystem.

In his contributions, NIG Vice President, Bayero Agabi, reiterated that the NIG was committed to using the internet to build capacity and ensure job creation, hence a close working relationship with the NCC was critical
The NIG team, which was led by the President, Destiny Amana, appealed to the commission to revisit the existing MoU between the NIG and the NCC on the Internet for Jobs Initiative (I4J), which he recalled gave birth to organisations like BudgIT, that are today contributing their quota to Nigeria’s socioeconomic development.

The NIG also used the opportunity to inform the commission of the nomination of the EVC Prof. Garba Danbatta into the Nigeria Internet Group Hall of Fame for his outstanding achievement in regulatory affairs noting that the rectified nominees would be inaugurated at a ceremony to be announced later.

During the visit to NBC, its Director General, Kawu Modibo, said the new NBC licencing regime would further boost content creation and consumption especially with increased Internet bandwidth and penetration.
He noted that Internet Protocol TV (IPTV) will change viewing patterns, hence collaborating with the NIG was pertinent at a time like this.

Modibo further briefed the NIG Exco on some of the Commission’s initiative to help push the government quest for job creation and economic diversification, adding that the NBC will ensure that local content is sustained, hence the production of Set Top Boxes (STBs) for the Digital Switch Over (DSO) were locally provided.