President Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday assured Nigerians that his administration would take immediate steps to fully implement the report of the Presidential Committee on National Broadband Strategy and Roadmap.
Jonathan gave the assurance after receiving the report of the Nigeria National Broadband Plan 2013 to 2018 in Abuja.
The report was jointly presented to him by the Minister of Communication Technology, Mrs Omobola Johnson and the Co-Chairmen of the Committee, Dr Ernest Ndukwe and Mr Jim Ovia.
Jonathan said he was confident that the successful implementation of the National Broadband Strategy and Roadmap would help to positively revolutionise communications in the country.
He said he subscribed to the committee’s view that broadband is to the 21st Century information age what electricity was to the industrial age.
Jonathan added that he would give “the fullest possible support’’ to the effort to ensure that the country “is wholly integrated into the global digital communications network’’.
“Any country that lags behind in the current age of ICT will miss a lot.
“That is why we have created the Ministry of Communication Technology to facilitate the establishment of the best digital communications infrastructure in Nigeria.
“The Ministry is also to optimise our adoption of global best practices in the use of information and communications technology.
“I thank you for your work and I assure you that the report will be adopted by government and implementation will begin immediately.’’
Earlier, Ndukwe had said that one of the key objectives of the Broadband plan evolved by the committee was to promote pervasive broadband deployment in the country.
Ndukwe said the plan would also increase broadband adoption and usage and ensure the availability of broadband services at affordable prices to maximise its socio-economic and political benefits.
He said it was expected that in the 2013 to 2018 implementation period, a five-fold increase in Internet and broadband penetration would be achieved in the country.
The committee was inaugurated in September 2012 to develop a broadband strategy and roadmap for the country.