REPORT CULLED FROM VANGUARD
A workshop organised by the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, weekend, to educate Nigerian Legislators on some intricate parts of telecom business/investments, incidentally exposed that Nigerians make a massive monthly investment of over four hundred billion naira on recharge cards alone.
This whopping sum, may have demystified the age long cliché that ‘Talk is cheap’. Besides, the investment on recharge cards, surprisingly dwarfed the ones made on House Rent, Petrol, Kerosene and electricity –options, known to have squeezed the economies of average Nigerians for several decades.
From the statistics of an ICT expert, Mr. Gbenga Oyebode of Aluko &Oyebode law firm, Nigerians spend 149.1bn on House rent, 128bn on Petrol, 144.8bn on Kerosene, and 91.8bn on electricity monthly. At the workshop themed: “ICT infrastructure as key driver for economic development: what role for the legislature?” Oyebode reeled out these figures to postulate the impact of ICT infrastructure on economic development.
However, he noted that “a study by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, OECD, shows that broadband penetration contributes significantly to economic growth. But notwithstanding all of the potential of ICT to GDP, Nigeria still lags behind due to insufficient development of ICT infrastructure. Today, broadband penetration is estimated at 6% in Nigeria. Another facilitator and Principal Partner, Kayafas Konsult Ltd, Mr Stephen Bello, also echoed Oyebode’s view that broadband is at its infancy in Nigeria with less than about 2% of the population having access to it.
He however added that the cost is still exorbitant even for corporate bodies. “We are still far from ITU targets which recommend that 50% of citizens and 40% of households by 2015 should have access to broadband. However, the recent policy framework and spectrum auction by NCC are designed to boost broadband availability in Nigeria.” Meanwhile, the Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, Dr. Eugene Juwah while briefing the legislators at the workshop said that the Nigerian National Broadband Plan seeks to promote broadband deployment, increase broadband adoption and usage, and ensure the availability of broadband services at affordable prices and...................wait,Wait, WAIT!!! Lets cut this long story short. They mean Me, You, all of Us together Spend Over 400 Billion Naira on Recharge Card inside one month???
Hmmm...I reserve my comment. What do you think of this statistics? TALK YOUR OWN