The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami, has promised to resolve issues surrounding the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria, ATCON, to ensure its accelerated progress.
Mr Pantami made the promise at the special reception party organised by ATCON on Friday in Abuja to welcome him as Minister.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that the telecommunications industry faces vandalism of telecoms infrastructure and over taxation by state governments, among other challenges.
Mr Pantami explained that the ministry had presented the issues to the National Security Adviser, the Federal Executive Council, FEC, and the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice for amicable resolution.
“I have the privilege of receiving most of the stakeholders on courtesy visit, I listened to the challenges facing the industry and gave my commitment to use the chance I have to make a difference.
“Last week, one of the issues we received regarding the industry, was presented at Federal Executive Council chaired by the President.
“The issues were presented to this body since it is the most relevant platform and actions are being taken to resolve them.
“I have been in touch with the Attorney-General of the Federation and even today, he sent me reply seeking for more clarification on the executive order,” he said.
Mr Pantami said that the task of taking the industry to greater heights should be the collective responsibility of the private and public sector.
He called for constructive criticisms from stakeholders rather than resorting to intimidation and propaganda to get the attention of the ministry.
He urged on members of the association to put all hands on deck by working together and always be in touch with the ministry for the association to go higher.
He said his doors were open for advice, recommendations, suggestions and constructive criticisms.
The minister thanked the association for the gesture for such an amazing gathering.
“Most of your challenges are known to me and I will take them upon myself to ensure that after every 24 hours, we will make progress in resolving them. I am more of a result- oriented person.
Earlier, Olusola Teniola, President, ATCON pledged to work with the ministry in order to create an industry that would attract huge investments where innovation would create an eco-system for smaller and larger operators to co-exist.
Mr Teniola assured that ATCON would continue to advocate in a professional, mature and objective manner to protect and promote the business of its teeming members in Nigeria.
He thanked the minister and commended him for the recently launched documents on National Digital Economy Policy Strategy.
Mr Teniola promised that the association would collaborate with the ministry to realise the set broadband target of 75 per cent in the documents within 5 years.
He noted that the collaboration would help the association remove obstacles working against the growth of the industry in the country.