Experts Advocate Integrated ICT broadband for effective Surveillance

By Sarauniya Usman, Abuja 

 Experts in Electrical Electronic Engineering have called for integrated ICT broadband rollout for effective surveillance to curb insecurity in the country.

The experts made the call at the 7th edition of the Nigerian Institute of Electrical Electronics Engineers (Abuja Chapter) Summit in Abuja.

With the Theme,“Security Challenges in Nigeria: The Role of the Electrical Engineers”.

The acting General Manager, Technical Services,NIGCOMSAT

Dr Lasisi Lawal, said the absence of telecommunications corridors created lots of problems for effective surveillance of the nation’s territories.

“Part of what we are advocating for is that when we rollout infrastructure, it should come out with a telecommunication corridor; for instance a railway master plan should come out with a telecommunication infrastructure”.

“It makes it easier to have intra and inter-metropolitan optic fibre system on which you could build surveillance system where we can put surveillance system.“We’ve had challenges of where government initiates rails for transportation and you have   unscrupulous and unpatriotic Nigerians  vandalise the infrastructure”.

“So now if we have a telecommunications corrider, you just take a strand of that telecommunication to deploy surveillance system to detect, deter, including monitor what happens on the infrastructure including broadband penetration to cities around”.“These are the things we are advocating, you build power lines just like we’ve seen transmission company of Nigeria having over head power when you build telecom infrastructure that carries optic fibre overhead that are safer,”  Lawal said.

According to him, this is safer compared to lack of GIS information that are deployed and  during road construction by state or local governments those fibres suffer cuts.

“We want policy makers to know that when you deploy such infrastructure, they should be safe, they should be in an area that has been mapped out.

“People can now lash on national communication guidelines for infrastructure sharing to come lay their fibre.

“Once you have this on ground, surveillance becomes easier, that is why in other climes if a crime happens within minutes, seconds, hours you get to know who has committed the crime.“We want to achieve broadband penetration of 70 per cent by 2025 but in achieving it, all of these must come to play.”

He therefore, called on all policy makers to ensure that established policy documents, especially those on broadband should be implemented

Retired Brig.Gen. Micheal Agu, the keynote speaker, said national security was a global problem, adding that as long as there were competitions over common and limited resources, conflicts would always arise.

He said threats that could make a country unstable included organised crimes, drugs, porous borders, socioeconomic and political challenges,environmental threats among others.

Agu, however, said the electrical electronic engineers could provide a more permanent solutions through research and development of engineering solutions.“They need to translate research into inventions for self reliance rather than relying on external companies or engineers to do the work for us.”

The Chairman, NIEEE, Mr Ikechukwu Amalu,  said finding engineering solutions to the problems of national security would automatically mean greater prosperity and improved  economic indices.

He said this would bring about renewed  investors’ confidence of the safety of their investments, reduced exodus  of skilled workforce in search of safer environment and greener pastures.

“Also improved patriotism of citizens and even more employment as the deployment of technology would mean greater engagement of citizens.

“This summit is for electrical, electronics and communication in Abuja, in short form, we call  it CCSEECEA.Its an annual summit which gives opportunity for electronic engineers to meet for networking, solving and problems in Nigeria,” Amalu said.

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