The Federal Executive Council (FEC) yesterday, approved a National Policy on 5th Generation of Networks to further enhance Nigeria’s digital economy.
Previously, the minister of communication and digital economy, Prof Isa Ibrahim Pantami announced that the work on the national policy on fifth generation (5G) mobile network deployment stands at 95 per cent done and will be presented to the FEC in due course.
The 5G network has elicited reactions from across the segments of the society with many looking forward to a new era of super-fast mobile network services. Prof Pantami had assured that 5G will improve quality of experience for mobile users and lead to increased connectivity.
This indeed, is a welcome development, as some citizens were sceptical about the 5G technology following the rumours that claimed 5G network was responsible for the spread of COVID-19 pandemic last year.
A chemical seller at Ojota market in Lagos, Mr Joseph Ekenne, told me, “I came to realise that if 3G and 4G didn’t cause any issue, why should 5G cause health issues, or fuel COVID-19? I have done my research about 5G, almost all the advanced countries have deployed the technology. I think it is time for Nigeria to move in that direction.”
To allay the fears of most Nigerians, Pantami said the decision to deploy the 5G network followed an outcome of thorough investigations, research, and trial absolving it of posing a security or health threat. “We set up a technical team that accommodated security, health and environmental institutions and the public sector so that we can be on the same page,” Pantami said.
The president, Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), Engr Ike Nnamani who said “it has been proven that there are no negative health implications from 5G,” added that, “5G equipment is available globally. When the spectrum is available and operators are licenced, the telcos will be able to rollout 5G services in Nigeria.”
On his part, co-founder, Domineum Blockchain Solutions Limited, Mohammed Ibrahim Jega said while rumours will always be there, he urges Nigerians to do research on 5G technology to disabuse their minds. “Only then can they can understand the benefits of 5G. Yes, technology has pros and cons, but in the case of the 5G, it has no health implication,” Jega adds.
Jega, also the founder, Startup Arewa, said technology is evolving and Nigeria can’t afford to be left behind. “We must tap into what is going on globally. We must utilise this opportunity. Nigeria is one of the highest users of technology in Africa. A lot of us are using 5G phones, and we need to have a 5G network,” he adds.
The CEO of MTN Nigeria, Karl Toriola said “We’ve carried out 5G trial with the authorities and we were very satisfied with the results of the trial.”