By Emma Okonji
The Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, has assured Nigerians of improved telecoms services.
He gave the assurance in Abuja recently, when he faced the Senate Screening Committee to answer questions about his performance in the last five years in office.
According to Danbatta, “As a Commission, we are committed to challenging our current achievements. Consequently, we are poised to work more with the National Assembly and other necessary stakeholders in order to ensure we take President Muhammadu Buhari’s digital agenda for the country to the next level in the next five years.”
Danbatta, was recently reappointed for a second term of five years by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Director, Public Affairs at NCC, Dr. Ikechukwu Adinde, said Danbatta would likely be confirmed by the Senate for his reappointment by the President for another five-year term in office as the country’s chief telecoms regulator, following his performance before the Senate committee.
Senator Ibrahim Oloriegbe, a member of the committee, who represented the Chairman of the Senate Screening Committee, Mrs. Oluremi Tinubu, during the screening, commended Danbatta’s performance in piloting the affairs of the country’s digital ecosystem. Other committee members who commended Danbatta, included Sen. Sandy Onor, Sen. Abiodun Olujimi, Sen. Omar Jeff, Sen. Kashim Shettima and Sen. Bukachuwa,
Oloriegbe noted that the screening and confirmation exercise was in accordance with the provisions of Section 8 subsections 1 and 4 of the Nigerian Communications Commission Act (NCA), 2003.
Section 8 subsection 1 of the Act states that “…all commissioners to be appointed after the coming into force of this Act shall be appointed by the President in accordance with Section 7 of this Act, from the six geo-political zones of Nigeria subject to confirmation by the Senate,” while subsection 4 states that “…commissioners shall serve for a term of five years from the date of their appointment at the expiration of which the President may renew the term for a further period of five years and no more.”
Danbatta, who gave accounts of his stewardship in the last five years, said the implementation of NCC’s strategic 8-point agenda, which he put in place when he assumed office in 2015, provided the basis for most of the Commission’s achievements in the last five years, especially in the areas of service availability, accessibility and affordability.
The EVC reeled some of his achievements in the past five years and provided industry and macro-economic statistics.
Danbatta thanked the lawmakers for their support over the last five years and pledged his renewed commitment to further accelerate the growth of the telecoms industry.