CPN to Address 5G Misgivings, Perceived Health Challenges

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Charles Uwadia

Emma Okonji

Worried about the misgivings and perceived health challenges surrounding the adoption and rollout of 5G network in Nigeria, the Computer Professionals Registration Council of Nigeria (CPN), the body responsible for control of the practice of computing in Nigeria, has said it will address such misgivings at its 2020 IT Assembly scheduled to hold online today.

Discarding the misgivings that electromagnetic radiation from 5G network could cause serious health challenges, the Council at a virtual press conference at the weekend to announce its 2020 IT Assembly, said it would continue to create awareness on the benefits of 5G, which is an improvement on 4G technology that is designed to enhance internet usage and increase its speed of connectivity. Council members insisted that 5G would help Nigeria achieve its digital transformation drive and survive better in post COVID-19 era, where all activities would be shifted online as a result of the new normal, brought about by the outbreak of COVID-19.

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), in collaboration with MTN, had a trial launch of 5G rollout in November 2019, in preparation for a full commercial 5G launch at a date yet to be determined. Since the trial launch, Nigerians from all walks of life have been apprehensive of the perceived dangers of 5G, which CPN said it would address through experts that have been lined up to speak on the theme of this year’s IT Assembly, tagged: ‘Adoption of 5G in Nigeria’.

President/Chairman of Council at CPN, Prof. Charles Uwadia, in his opening speech during the online press conference organised by CPN, said: “There is no doubt that the adoption of 5G, which has been touted as the next frontier of investment, has the potential to drive economic growth and social inclusion. Presently, Nigeria’s Information Communication Technology Sector contributes more than fossil Oil and Gas to the nation’s GDP. To demonstrate its seriousness on the migration to 5G, the Federal Government, through the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) midwifed the non-commercial trial of the 5G network in November, 2019.

“As transformatory as the 5G agenda is, its adoption is not without challenges. It is for this reason that the 2020 IT Professionals’ Assembly would be considering the technological and regulatory challenges associated with the adoption of 5G viz-a-viz the future of frequency bands, deployment and coverage, device support, security and privacy, Digital Infrastructure challenges, outdated regulatory policies, removal of impediments to the expansion of digital infrastructures, commitment to actions that promote the long-term growth of the digital economy, misgivings and health concerns against it, among other issues.”

He said technology experts would address Nigerians on the many benefits of 5G network and also allay the perceived fears of 5G, which according to him, would help Nigerians stay connected to the internet in today’s digital era, where the new normal has become prevalent.

The Registrar, CPN, Mr. Allwell Achumba, said the 14th edition of the IT Assembly would feature over 400 inductees that have been tested and confirmed to practice computing processes in Nigeria.