The Nigerian Communications Commission has inaugurated a committee to develop the Information Memorandum for the auction of 3.5 gigahertz spectrum band which will be used for the deployment of Fifth Generation services in the country.
This was disclosed in a statement signed by Director, Public Affairs, Ikechukwu Adinde.
The Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NCC, Umar Danbatta, inaugurated an 18-member Committee.
Recently, a senate investigative hearing gave the 5G technology a clean bill of health.
The NCC’s Executive Commissioner, Technical Services, Ubale Maska, was inaugurated as the auction adviser while the Director, Spectrum Administration, NCC, Oluwatoyin Asaju, was named the committee chairman.
Speaking at the inauguration, Danbatta said, “Apart from developing the IM for auctioning of C-band spectrum for 5G deployment in Nigeria, the Terms of Reference of the committee will include the development of an award process to be used pursuant to which the grant of spectrum licenses may be made.
“Arising from these efforts, which include engagements with relevant governmental and non-governmental organisations during preparatory meetings at national, regional and continental levels, we have been able to secure harmonised frequencies for 5G deployment in Nigeria.”
The IM is the process by which the commission wants to auction the 3.5GHz spectrum band.
It will provide information on the Nigerian telecommunications market, details of the spectrum to be made available, the pre-qualification process, the auction process and indicative timetable.
Other ToRs that are within the purview of the committee is the auctioning of the C-band spectrum for 5G deployment in Nigeria in line with the award process as well as report regularly/fortnightly to the EVC through the office of the Executive Commissioner, Technical Services on the progress made by the committee.
According to Danbatta, the NCC has committed resources to ensure harmonised spectrum is secured and released in time for present and future deployment of services that will underpin the fourth industrial revolution, including International Mobile Telecommunication (IMT-2020) services.
“Having put in these efforts and resources to secure, amongst others, contiguous spectrum in a premium band like the 3.5GHz band that is being adopted as the best spectrum for early deployment of 5G with about 70 per cent of 5G global deployment so far, it has become imperative to immediately re-purpose the 3.5GHz band in Nigeria for auction in accordance with best practices,” Danbatta added.