Still at the convergence forum, the Managing Director, CEO of the Nigerian Communications Satellite, NIGCOMSAT Ltd, Engr. Ahmed_Rufai again reiterated the pivotal role satellite connectivity and broadband can achieve especially in bridging the existing knowledge gap in Nigeria and the entire Africa
To him, satellite connectivity will quickly serve as veritable platform to reach the grossly underserved and unserved parts of society.
Rufai who spoke on the theme Satellite Connectivity Infrastructure and Broadband: The NIGCOMSAT Perspective, at the event, said that, in the current era of globalisation, NIGCOMSAT,s dream is to turn villages in Nigeria and indeed Africa into a virtual village. This, he said can be done through the deployment of global communication infrastructure (communication satellites and complimentary ground infrastructures) and subsequent integration into the global community.
“We desire to linkup rural communities scattered around the country with the cities with the desire to bring the rural communities to speed with the ever dynamic and constantly evolving cities” Rufai maintained.
He said this can be achieved through the use of satellite engineering and space technologies as an extraordinary driver of national ICT revolution in pursuit of self reliance and required skills for engineering and technological domestication.
He further said, it can be achieved by the provision of secured satellite bandwidth and telecommunication services for defence, security outfits and other strategic telecommunications and broadcast needs of the nation.
The Managing Director also observed that in the area of education, Information and knowledge are critical components of poverty alleviation strategies.
He said they are necessary for breaking the chain of poverty which is vital for the fiscal growth of a nation believing that NigComSat_1R can provide easy access to huge amounts of information useful to the poor as services can be provided to effectively reach economically underprivileged people with information that is relevant and useful to them.
“The deprived can take advantage of increased income, better healthcare, improved education and training, access to job opportunities, enterprise development opportunities, increased agricultural development, and so on”.
He frowned at the capacity building in software and hardware development system in the country saying “Today the highest level of skill Nigerian engineers can attain in the technology sector, whether hardware or software, is to obtain a vendor certification such as CCNP, MCSE, ORACLE DBA etc.
These certifications are aimed at engineers who will install, configure and manage equipment and software from the various vendors. It is obvious that while this is important, there is no much room for creativity and innovation here”.
“The telecoms services industry has helped to promote the current skills level in Nigeria.