Inside NCC | Meet the new telecoms watchdogs of Nigeria

Inside NCC | Meet the new telecoms watchdogs of Nigeria

Inside NCC | Meet the new telecoms watchdogs of Nigeria

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The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) is the influential watchdog that regulates the Nigerian telecoms industry.

Within the walls of NCC heaquarted in Abuja, the nation’s seat of power is an elaborate organisational structure of departments and employees that report either directly or indirectly to Professor Umar Danbatta, the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the regulatory agency of the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The Board of Commissioners often called “The Board” of which the EVC and the two Executive Commissioners are members, comprised people picked by the President of Nigeria from different parts of Nigeria and vested with the governance and oversight functions over all of the regulatory activities of NCC.

The Board’s influential and overarching oversight covers NCC’s structure of 20 Departments, including 4 Departments under the Human Capital & Infrastructure Group in an agency that touches virtually every sector of Nigeria’s economy.

Danbatta, the EVC, who doubles as CEO at NCC, directly oversees 10 Departments, including the Human Capital & Infrastructure Group at the telecoms regulatory agency.

The telecoms regulatory chief has to shoulder the burden of ensuring that operators on his watch deliver good customer experience 149,249,510 phone subscribers and 90,124,428 (the official telecoms market data for April 20017) spread across Nigeria.

NATCOM must pay, Professor Umar Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman at NCC, insists
Professor Umar Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman of NCC

The telecoms regulatory chief has to shoulder the burden of ensuring that operators on his watch deliver good customer experience 149,249,510 phone subscribers and 90,124,428 (the official telecoms market data for April 20017) spread across Nigeria.

The NCC EVC’s role has him overseeing an agency carrying overseeing several hundreds of licensed telecoms operators and other value providers along the value chain of the telecoms ecosystem and millions of subscribers to voice, data and allied services across the nook and cranny of Nigeria.

Within the organisational layer, an old timer in NCC, Engineer Ubale Ahmed Maska, who is the Executive Commissioner – Technical Services (ECTS), directly supervises the departments charged with the oversight of technical standards, spectrum and engineering issues governing the broad spectrum of the Nigerian telecoms industry.

On his part, a relative new entrant into NCC, Mr. Sunday Akin Dare, is the Executive Commissioner (Stakeholder Management) Executive Commissioner – Stakeholder Management (ECSM) and is responsible to directly supervise the departments charged with addressing the needs of telecommunications industry stakeholders including vendors, service providers and consumers.

However, within the NCC Board sits Danbatta, the agency’s current EVC and other insiders and appointees who steer the regulatory tide that shape and define the telecoms investment environment and industry in general.

Who are the men on the NCC Board?

Technology Times profiles them below:


 

 

Biodata | Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye mni, JP, Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye was nominated Chairman of Nigerian Communications Commission by President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, on August 2, 2016, and confirmed by the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on November 17th, 2016.

Born in Ojowo, Ijebu-Igbo, in Ogun State, to the family of the late Olisa of Ijebu-Igbo; Chief Benjamin Osibanjo Durojaiye, Olabiyi Durojaiye attended Ojowo United Primary School and Molusi College, Ijebu-Igbo, before proceeding to obtain a University of London degree (BSc.) in Economics in 1960, and then an LLB in 1976, also from the University of London, while working in Nigeria. Otunba Durojaiye then took and passed the B.L. (Barrister at Law) Examination at the Nigeria Law School in Lagos in 1979. He then proceeded to the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) Kuru, Plateau State, the premier leadership training institute in Nigeria, as a member of the foundation Senior Executive Course (No. 1), obtaining the mni in 1980.

Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye mni, JP, Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC)
Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye mni, JP, Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC)

Senator Durojaiye’s professional career began immediately after leaving Molusi College, starting at the Federal Lands Registry in Lagos in 1954 before going on to the defunct Western Region Public Service in Ibadan, Oyo State in 1957. His twenty three year career at the Central Bank of Nigeria began in 1961 wherein he served in such key positions as Research Officer, Manager Staff Matters, Deputy Exchange Controller, Secretary to the Board and eight years as the Director of Administration by 1984. It was then that Otunba Durojaiye was appointed Executive Director (Finance and Commercial) at the Nigeria Security Printing and Minting Company (the Mint) on secondment from the Central Bank by the Buhari/Idiagbon military administration where he played a key role in the new Mint Board’s first task in effecting the change of the colours of the Naira note.

While a Director of the Central Bank, Durojaiye served on the Boards of the Nigerian Industrial Development Bank (NIDB) and of the Federal Mortgage Bank. He was also the National Treasurer for seven years and President of Alumni Association of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies from 1988 to 1990. He has also attended numerous professional courses; including courses with the IMF (International Monetary Fund), the Federal Reserve System in the USA and the London City University Business School Course for Senior Bankers and Financial Executives.

Senator Durojaiye voluntarily retired from public service in 1989, joining the Law Chambers of Chief Rotimi Williams CFR, SAN as a legal practitioner, from which he resigned to contest the botched 1991 – 1992 Presidential election primaries on the platform of the SDP (Social Democratic Party).

Otunba Olabiyi Durojaiye’s political experience and activities includes his election as a member of the Constituent Assembly charged with reviewing the Draft Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1988/89) as the representative of the Ijebu-North Federal Constituency. He subsequently served as Chairman of the Registration Committee of the PSP (People Solidarity Party) under the political transtion programme instituted by the military regime of General Ibrahim Babangida.

From 1993 to 1999, Olabiyi Durojaiye was an active member of Afenifere and the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO) that successfully fought for the end of military rule in Nigeria, which resulted in his imprisonment under solitary confinement from 3rd December, 1996 to 16th June 1998 (560 days) by the military government of the late General Sani Abacha.

Following his release upon the end of the General Abacha regime, Otunba Olabiyi Durojaiye contested and won the Ogun East Senatorial seat in the Senate, serving from 1999 to 2003, where he was Chairman of the Establishment and Public Service Committee. Today, Senator Durojaiye is an elected member of the Board of Trustees of the All Progressives Congress (APC), representing Ogun State in the Party’s Convention of 2014.

Otunba Durojaiye was conferred upon the legal status of Notary Public in April 1994, and is the head of the eponymous Law Chambers of Durojaiye & Co. Legal Practitioners and Notary Public in Ikeja, Lagos. Over the course of his storied career, Otunba Olabiyi Durojaiye has had the opportunity to travel to all 36 States of Nigeria, over forty other nations in and out of Africa. His publications include;

  • Nigeria Tomorrow: My Vision and Mission – February, 1992.
  • The Road to Freedom: An Account of the Struggle for Democracy and My Memoirs at 70 – February, 2003
  • Guided by His Hands: An Autobiography to Mark My 80th Birthday – February, 2013.

Otunba Olabiyi Durojaiye was a member of the Parish Council (now Standing Committee) and President of the Christian Morning Star Society of St. Matthew’s Church (now the Cathedral) Ojowo, Ijebu-Igbo since 1985. He was happily married to the former Miss Olufunso Olubanjo for 50 years (9th April, 1959 – 7th June, 2009) when she peacefully transited to the great beyond. Their marriage was blessed with two sons, four daughters and many grand children.

Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye was nominated Chairman of Nigerian Communications Commission by President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, on August 2, 2016, and confirmed by the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on November 17th, 2016.

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BIODATA | Professor Umar Garba Danbatta is the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Office (EVC/CEO) of the NCC.

Executive Vice Chairman (EVC), NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta
Professor Umar Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission

Born in Danbatta Local Government Council of Kano State, Prof. Danbatta obtained his BEng, MSc degrees from the Technical University of Wroclaw in Poland and his PhD from the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST) UK respectively.

He has served as a lecturer in the Department of Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Technology of Bayero University Kano for 28 years, where he taught courses in telecommunications engineering and electronics and held academic positions of Dean of the Faculty and Head of Department at different times. His main administrative responsibilities, in the university, included Deputy and Acting Dean of Students’ Affairs, Administrator of the Works Department and later, Director of the Centre for Information Technology (CIT).

He was also a member of over 60 University committees and task forces, including numerous stints as Chairman. In administrative and other responsibilities outside the university, he has served on over 20 committees, prominent among which was his Chairmanship of the Implementation Committee of Kano State University of Science & Technology, after which he became its pioneer Deputy and Acting Vice-Chancellor when it took off in 2001.

Prof. Danbatta has supervised more than 60 PhD, MEng and BEng projects in diverse areas of telecommunications and has also served as external  examiner  to  seven universities  and  polytechnics  and  is  an  assessor,  technical  reviewer and editorial member to eight research journals. He has to his credit more than 50 articles in journals, conference proceedings and technical reports. He is also the author of a six-chapter, 167-page book titled Elements of Static Engineering Electromagnetics.

He is a recipient of 18 distinguished awards and certificates of honour. Prof. Danbatta has served two terms of five years as a Member of Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), and is also a COREN registered engineer and member of the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE).

He  was  the  Vice  President  of  the  Digital  Bridge  Institute  (DBI), International Centre for Advanced Communications Studies, which was established in the year 2004 by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to build capacity for the Nigerian/African telecom industry in the diverse areas of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). While at DBI he has developed expertise in the following major areas of ICT implementation, policy and regulation:

  • Regulation of the Telecommunications Sector of the Nigerian Economy;
  • Competition, Interconnection and Price Regulations in a Developing Economy;
  • Issues concerning Authorization of Telecommunications Services in a Developing Economy;
  • Strategies for ensuring Universal Access and Service to Telecommunications Services;
  • Strategies towards Effective Spectrum Management in a Developing Economy;
  • Issues on Institutional and Legal Framework for Effective Regulation of Telecommunications Services; and
  • New and Emerging Technologies and Impact on Regulation of the Telecommunications Sector of a Developing Economy.

Until his appointment as the EVC, Prof. Danbatta, who recently served as a member of the Implementation Committee of the Northwest University Kano, served as the Acting Vice-Chancellor of the Kano University of Science & Technology, Wudil.

Kolade Akinola Technology Journalist at Technology Times Mobile: + 234 (0) 807 401 6027

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