By Sarauniya Usman, Abuja
Professor Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), warns against the misinformation and misrepresentation of 5G technology, saying it has the potential to derailing its implementation in the country.
Danbatta,gave the warning on Tuesday at a two day capacity building training session for members of Nigeria Information Technology Reporters’ Association (NITRA),Abuja Chapter.
He said the theme aptly reflect the focus of the training, the theme which has been deliberately chosen is “Capacity Building for Telecom Reporters”.
Represented by Dr Ikechukwu Adinde, Director, Public Affairs of NCC, noted that a lot of falsehoods and misinformation have been peddled both on the social media and traditional media outlets, with regard to the health and safety implications of deploying the new technology in Nigeria.
He advised Nigerians to dissuade from spreading false notion about 5G.
“Many Nigerians including citizens in more civilized countries were hooked on the notion that the introduction of 5G technology was the reason behind the spread of the novel COVID-19 Pandemic.”
“This misconception was even made worse because those saddled with the responsibility of informing, educating and enlightening the average Nigerian telecom consumers were also bereft of the knowledge of this new technology and hitched a ride on the band wagon of doubters.”
He said in a situation where many Nigerians including citizens from other climes, erroneously believe that the introduction of 5G technology was responsible for the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He further lamented that the misconception of the technology was even made worse owing to the fact that many journalists and telecoms consumers lack sufficient information about the 5 G technology.
The Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, however, underscored the indispensability of 5G technology, adding that its impact “will be much greater than the current 4 G network.”
While listing the benefits of the new technology, Danbatta quoted a recent report by Qualcomm, which predicted that 5G would affect the global economy and drive its growth exponentially.
According to him, “5G’s full economic effect will likely be realised across the globe by 2035, supporting a wide range of industries and potentially enabling up to $13.2trillion worth of goods and services.
“This impact will be much greater than the current 4G network.
“5G when fully deployed will provide increased speed and bandwidth as well as provide deeper coverage to reach people in rural or challenging locations.
“In addition, 5G will provide strong security for the various sectors of government and private organisations.
“Due to its sheer scale and scope, the International Telecommunications Union(ITU) predicts 5G will accelerate the achievements of all the 17 Sustainable Development Goals(SDGs) from affordable and clean energy to zero hunger.”
Therefore, Danbatta admonished ICT reporters to take advantage of the training to expand their horizons and objectively report events, with the view to informing and educating the telecommunications subscribers and the public.