The Federal Government has approved the sum of 24.2bn for the provision of broadband internet
connection in at least 20 airports, 43 schools and six marketplaces nationwide. The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Pantami, announced this on Wednesday while briefing State House reporters after the federal cabinet meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The projects were approved after the presentation of two memos which would be implemented by
the Nigerian Communications Commission, a parastatal under the supervision of the Federal Ministry
of Communications and Digital Economy.
He said “Internet will be provided in 20 selected airports in Nigeria and higher institutions of learning as well as some markets to support micro, small and medium enterprises.
”A contract was awarded for the provision of broadband in some selected airports, 20 of them are going to be covered in the first phase of the project.
”You have three airports in each geo-political zone, in the South West, you have two in Lagos, you have in Ondo. For South East, you have Imo, Anambra, and Enugu. For South-South, you have Port Harcourt, Akwa Ibom. For North Central, you have Abuja and Ilorin. For North West, you have Kano, Sokoto and Kebbi. For North East, you have in Yola, Maiduguri and Gombe.”
“The duration for the project is four months minimum and a maximum of five months and there is a budgetary provision for that. Also, the fund to sponsor the implementation has been secured by the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari’’
According to him, the internet broadband will be provided for free use by passengers coming to the airports, adding that a sustainability model has been developed for effective maintenance of the facilities.
“For universities, it is because we have learned bitter and better lessons during the COVID-19, so we don’t want to go back to that, we want to ensure that students and staff benefit from unlimited internet. Mr Pantami also announced that 43 higher institutions of learning would be linked to the internet facility. Some of them are universities, and some polytechnics and the price for the contract which covers the airports and institutions of learning is N18.95 billion”.
The second approval was for the provision of broadband to some selected marketplaces at the cost of N2.25 billion . The total for both memos is N24.20 billion and the project is going to be implemented by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC),” the minister explained.