By Abdullahi Mohammed
The Federal Executive Council (FEC) Wednesday approved N24.2 billion for the provision of internet facilities at 20 airports, some tertiary institutions and markets across the country.
Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami disclosed this at the end of the weekly FEC cabinet meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) would spearhead the provision of the internet facilities at the designated airports and institutions.
“The Federal Executive Council has approved two memos for the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) a parastatal under the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy. In these memos, certain intervention projects are going to be implemented by the NCC.
“Internet will be provided in 20 selected airports in Nigeria and higher institutions of learning as well as some markets to support micro, small and medium enterprises. A contract was awarded for the provision of broadband in some selected airports. 20 of them are going to be covered in the first phase of the project.
“You have three airports in each geo-political zone. In South-West you have two in Lagos State, one in Ondo State; South-East you have Imo, Anambra and Enugu States will benefit; Rivers and Akwa-Ibom States for South-South; North West has the Federal Capital Territory and Kwara States; Kano, Sokoto and Kebbi States will benefit from the North-West while Borno, Adamawa and Gombe States will benefit from the North-East Region,” he said.
He said a free internet broadband would be provided for use by passengers coming to the airports, adding that a sustainability model has been developed for effective maintenance of the facilities.
The minister said 43 higher institutions of learning will be linked to the internet facility.
“Some of them are universities, some polytechnics and the price for the contract which covers the airports and institutions of learning is N18.95 billion. The second approval was for the provision of broadband to some selected markets.
“At the cost of N5.25 billion and the total for both memos is N24.20 billion and the project is going to be implemented by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC),” he said.