Main One boss tasks govt on broadband provision
By Prince Osuagwu
From all indications, broadband could lead ICT economy in 2013. Being arguably the second mainstay of the economy after oil, improvement in the ICT economy will surely impact positively on the economy.
This could possibly be why broadband cable company, mainone believes that the government will gain a lot if it broadens the policies that would guide broadband penetration and also open up the landscapes a bit, more active private participation would be attracted.
Taking stock ,recently, of its operations in 2012 cum activities since three years of existence, the company noted that major activities that highlighted broadband as economy booster and attracted government attention has been initiated by private investors including its visionary investment in landing submarine broadband cable from Portugal to the shores of Lagos Nigeria, Accra Ghana and other Africa countries.
Recounting its participation since that time, MainOne’s CEO, Ms Funke Opeke said that, “MainOne has actually had an impact and made significant contribution to the broadband access in the country although we have not done as much as we would have liked, due to some challenges.
We are still facing the issue of last mile deployment to enable people have ubiquitous access. We have boosted the broadband lives of people in Abuja, Portharcourt and Lagos even at great cost. Our vision is to see that at least the schools, health sector and even all the local governments in the country are wired and connected for best broadband experience.
”We will continue to drum the importance of development of road and access for a better economy” she added
Opeke also revealed that while her company was expecting that the government would make policy statement that can help, it was also doing other things from behind to help.
“We are planning a better data centre that can back up banks, media houses and others into archiving important information and data storage that can help make the nation a global nation.
The data centre is physical. What we are trying to do is adopt a model that can hold very sensitive data that we already have and those we are also going to have. We are planning tier three, tier four data centre that can hold its own in the world. It will be located in Lagos and we are intending to complete it in 2013 and it becomes fully operational in 2014. The capacity is estimated to hold at least 600 racks and after that the second one which will also hold up to another 600 racks.
”We are looking at both regulatory and legislative interventions before the benefit of broadband would trickle down to the remotest parts of the country. We are engaging both the regulator and the National Assembly. We are asking the government to open up the landscape in order not to make carrying service to the ultimate consumer so costly. Right now, we are moving into Warri and other places but it costs us a lot, to extend services to these places. If we get the government to open up the landscape more, we may be able to do more
Resolution of right of way
Right of way is a major issue. The government has intervened but it is still a work in progress as far as we know. The ministry of communications technology is working to ensure that the states and local governments adopt the same proposals made.
Let there be infrastructure sharing policy that the government can put up in less than 60 days to quicken things. The problem is that we look a lot at policy frameworks and researches and papers without doing anything actually.