The Federal Government has clarified that it has not given any license for the deployment of the fifth generation (5G) network in Nigeria.
Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, who made government’s position known, explained however that the ministry allowed for a three-month study trial of the network which commenced on November 25, 2019 in order to critically review and study the health and security implications of deploying 5G in Nigeria.
There had been speculations making the rounds in various social media outlets that the outbreak of Coronavirus across the globe may not be unconnected to the deployment of the 5G network.
But in a statement he personally signed yesterday, the minister said, “The attention of my office has been drawn to the public concern about the health implications of the deployment of fifth generation mobile networks (5G) in Nigeria.
“Based on available records at my office and the earlier report received from the regulator, I would like to clarify as follows, the National Frequency Management Council (NFMC) of which I am the chairman, has not deliberated on or released any bulk frequency spectrum for the deployment of 5G; no license has been issued for the deployment of 5G in the country.”
He further said the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) had been directed to ensure that a team of experts, security agencies and other stakeholders fully participate in the trial process and that the ministry also invited these agencies to participate in the trial, adding that the process had been concluded and the study and reporting process were currently ongoing.
Pantemi emphasised that government places a premium on the welfare, health and security of Nigerians as such its desire for technological advancement would never be at the expense of the health and welfare of Nigerians.
He continued: “Government will not act on speculations only, but rather we will take an informed decision on 5G after due consultation with experts and the public.I have also directed the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), to engage citizens on any questions or concerns they may have regarding 5G.
“I wish to thank the general public for reaching out to us on this issue. We advise you all to remain rest assured that government will always take the welfare, health and security of the public into account while considering the deployment of any technology”.