GOODWILL MESSAGE BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE, HIS EXCELLENCY (DR.) ABUBAKAR BUKOLA SARAKI, CON, AT THE COMMISSIONING CEREMONY OF MOBILE RADIO FREQUENCY SPECTRUM MONITORING EQUIPMENT, NATIONAL MANAGEMENT SYSTEM, DENIAL OF SERVICE EQUIPMENT AND NATIONAL CONTROL CENTRE THE FEDERAL MINISTRY OF COMMUNICATIONS AT THE SHEHU MUSA YAR’ADUA CENTRE, ABUJA, ON DECEMBER 14, 2018.
1. I am delighted to be here for the commissioning of new and crucial radio equipment acquired for Nigeria by the Federal Ministry of Communications. I congratulate the Honourable Minister of Communications, Dr. Abdur-Raheem Adebayo Shittu for bringing to fruition the procurement of these much needed 21st century equipment, once a statement of intent in the 2017 Appropriation, and the successful completion of which has brought us all here today.
2. This commissioning event is significant for many reasons, not least a remarkable advancement in our communications systems. The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) sees the Radio Frequency Spectrum as one of the key natural resources of great economic value that our country can boast of. This is due to Radio Frequency Spectrum’s direct bearing on telecommunications, broadcasting as well as military operations with their implications for national security.
3. The Radio Frequency Spectrum is also pivotal to a wide range of other socio-economic activities, including: social services, law and order, education and transportation. An improvement to the Radio Frequency Spectrum, therefore, represents an enhancement of our socio-economic capabilities across many sectors. All of which serve to underscore the importance of today’s commissioning and the benefits to our country and her economy.
4. The Federal Ministry of Communications has made a major leap in acquiring the following state-of-the-art equipment: the National Spectrum Management System, a Denial of Service Equipment, a National Control Centre as well as a Mobile Radio Frequency Spectrum Monitoring Equipment for deployment in the regulation of the radio frequency spectrum. This is highly commendable, because as I made reference to earlier, the radio spectrum is a major component of the critical infrastructure that fortifies the information society in today’s world.
5. This observation becomes even more salient in light of the many challenges that have plagued the industry with regard to regulation of the radio spectrum. A case in point is the problem of frequency jamming which has been witnessed on many occasions across the country. The illegal and rampant use of transmission power by some radio stations has also resulted in frequency interference and clashes. It is reassuring to note that, with the new equipment, we can finally begin to talk about confronting these challenges head-on, and minimising them to a considerable degree, even as we work towards the total eradication of illegal practices in the industry.
6. Distinguished guests, let me assure that the 8th National Assembly, under my leadership, appreciates that regulatory and oversight activities are never truly effective without the resources needed to carry them out. It was for this reason that we as the legislature gave our full support and approved the provision for the new equipment and systems when they came up in the 2017 Capital Appropriation. I am very happy that, today, the result of that endeavour on our part and on the part of the Ministry of Communication, is very clear to see. I congratulate the Ministry on successfully acquiring this equipment that will go a long way to strengthen the execution of its functions across the spectrum.
7. Another important thing to note is that the deployment of the equipment will boost the revenue generation potentials of parastatals under the Ministry. Expectedly, the ability to properly track and monitor operations in the Nigerian radio industry can easily translate into the recovery of revenue streams as well as the establishment of new ones. As we all know, the ultimate beneficiaries of increased government revenue are everyday Nigerians whom we have a mandate to serve.
8. It is my expectation that the new equipment will give a massive improvement to the landscape of our communications sector. As a matter of fact, I will be personally delighted to observe the impact that will be created by these acquisitions, because it is always hugely satisfying when one has the privilege to see a project taken from the appropriation process to execution in real terms, for the progress of our country.
9. Once again, I congratulate the Honourable Minister and the Ministry on the commissioning of the new equipment and facilities.
PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE