By Emmanuel Elebeke

 The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has tasked telecom consumers and the host communities of infrastructure to protect telecom infrastructure in their domain to ensure improved telecom service delivery.

 The Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NCC (EVC/CEO), Prof. Umar Danbatta, made the appeal at the second edition of the Village Square Dialogue (VSD), one of the Commission’s consumer outreach programmes.

While soliciting the support of telecoms consumers in complementing the Commission’s efforts at ensuring improved telecoms service delivery in their communities, the EVC said a community must protect telecom infrastructure in its vicinity by allowing the installations of equipment and maintenance or repairs on sites by technical staff of service providers.

The dialogue took place in Danbatta Local Government Area, Kano State recently with a focus on, “Protection of Telecom Infrastructure for Improved Quality of Service: The Role of Residents.”

 While addressing telecoms consumers and traditional rulers at the forum, Danbatta, who was represented by NCC’s Director, Technical Standards and Network Integrity, Bako Wakil, said to ensure improved telecom service delivery, a community must protect telecom infrastructure in its vicinity by allowing the installations of equipment and maintenance or repairs on sites by technical staff of service providers.

 Danbatta also enjoined members of respective communities to guard against destruction of telecoms infrastructure, through prompt notification of service providers of any ongoing road construction activities by companies or government agencies to avoid service disruption that may arise from damaged infrastructure. 

 The EVC further stated that protecting telecom infrastructure is very important in any community, as the ability to connect and communicate is fundamental to human existence considering its centrality in improving businesses, government services, education, communities and families to share information through seamless connections.

 He noted that technological advances have assisted people to gain access to learning opportunities outside traditional schooling. “Today, you simply need a computer, smartphone, and the Internet connection to do so many things and telecom infrastructure in your communities provide the critical facilities that support Internet access to these devices and therefore, you are expected to protect the infrastructure,” he said.

 Danbatta warned that vandalism of telecom infrastructure has a great negative impact on the community as its reduces coverage area, leading to ‘dead spots’ on the network which result in poor quality of service (QoS) and quality of experience (QoE) by the consumers, adding that the  destruction of telecom infrastructure discourages investment in network expansion by operators.

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