Digital economy is a key enabler of other sectors of the economy — Minister Pantami


…Harps on benefits of 5G

By Ibiyemi Mathew and Ariemu Ogaga

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami has emphasised that the prosperity of Nigeria’s digital economy is key to the survival of other sectors of the economy.

Speaking at the unveiling ceremony of MAFAB 5G networks in Abuja, Pantami stated that, “Digital economy is no longer an independent sector but a key enabler of other sectors. If you take away digital facilities from our banking system, from education and other sectors today, the system will become obsolete.”

Highlighting the achievements recorded since the Federal Government started paying attention to the digital economy, Pantami stated that the revenue generated by the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector had increased by 594 per cent between August 2019 and October 2022.

“On 17 and 18th of October 2022 a ministry performance review was organised by our principal President Muhammadu Buhari where all the Ministries were evaluated by independent assessors in collaboration with the Office of the Secretary to the Federation. The contribution to the economy from the base line given to me from when I came into office in August 2019, we were able to increase revenue generation by ICT sector by 594 per cent.

“This is unprecedented in the history of Nigeria. And the quarterly generation by the ICT sector as at when I took over was around N51 billion Naira but today it is around N408 billion and it is still increasing. And with the deployment of the 5G, there are still many opportunities that will come onboard. So the benefits of the 5G network deployment is beyond just quality of service,” he said.

According to Pantami, the rollout of 5G in the country presents a greater opportunity for Nigeria’s GDP to experience more growth.

“Beyond the economic advantages that 5G provides, I urge us all to embrace it to secure the country. It is useful in security, healthcare, education and other sectors of the economy,” he reiterated.

On his part, the Executive Vice-Chairman of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof Umar Danbatta attributed the success of Nigeria’s journey to embracing 5G network to the support of President Muhammedu Buhari and relevant stakeholders in the telecom industry.

Earlier, the Chairman/Founder of MAFAB Communications, Dr Mushabu Bashir, said the takeoff of the MAFAB 5G network highlights Nigeria’s strengths and limitless potentials.

While enumerating the enormous opportunities which the network promises for Nigeria, Bashir said that the “5G network will usher into this country a wide array of business opportunities, wherein various business outfits will expand their frontiers with operational ease and speed, especially in the fields of education, medical sciences, engineering, security, businesses like the banking sector, SMEs, smart cities, transportation, entertainment which will not benefit only urban area but, also meet our long-term goal of ensuring that even people in rural areas and villages also enjoy benefits of this amazing technology.”

MAFAB communications is one of the three companies that won the bidding for the 5G 3.5GHz Spectrum licenses in Nigeria.

The company also presented a brand-new logo to herald a beginning of an era of limitless opportunities made possible by technology.