Nigeria’s USPF embark on telecom facilities enhancement plan

A recent consultative forum hosted by Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF), a subsidiary of Nigerian communications commission (NCC), had the organisation reveal its plans for furthering information and communication technology (ICT) development in Nigeria in the next 5 years.

The new Strategic Management Plan (SMP) goal is to facilitate universal access to communications and applications service from 2013 to 2017.

USPF said the implementation of its 5-year (SMP) will enhance Nigeria’s telecoms infrastructure.

USPF was previously burdened with the responsibility of providing funds for the rollout of ICT infrastructures in the country, especially in rural areas.

In 2007, the USPF Board developed a plan to guide activities of the USPF from 2007 to 2011, in consultation with industry stakeholders, the expiration of the first strategic management plan in 2011 drove the board to embark on another five-year plan to drive its operations KPMG, a consulting firm to USPF would accomplish the five-year strategy.

Retuned Kane, Senior Manager, Management Consulting for KPMG revealed that, the fund would have three major programmers which include Research Study and survey, creation and subsidy incentives.

She added that USPF would not only create an awareness campaign in rural and underserved communities on the need to enhance broadband, but also carry out a research to find out the challenges they face in ICT with a goal of providing a lasting solution to the mentioned challenges.

Examples of suggestions made were proper audit of USPF activities, consideration of policies to drive local content, youth engagement programmes for youths engaged in on-line fraud and lastly youth empowerment.

Omobola Johnson, Chairman of USPF and Minister of Communication in Nigeria, said the forum would provide stakeholders with the opportunity to identify the direction of the organisation’s activities in the next five years.

USPF is a special fund that was set up by the Federal Government of Nigeria; it was designed to provide telecommunications and ICT services to unserved, underserved and deprived groups and communities in the country.

NCC is an independent regulatory body for the Nigerian communication industry they are in charge of regulating the supply of telecommunication services and facilities, promoting competition and lastly setting performance standards for Nigerian telephone services.

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