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Wednesday, 06 December 2023 05:59

FG needs $2 billion to lay fibre optic cables across Nigeria — Minister

Bosun Tijani, the Minister of Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy, has stated that the construction of fibre optic cables nationwide in Nigeria is estimated to require a $2 billion investment. 

Tijani shared this information on Tuesday while featuring in an interview on Channels TV.  

He added that his ministry, working alongside the Nigeria Communication Commission, sees fibre optics as a priority to improve the quality of communication service in the country.  

According to the Minister, the federal government has already constructed about 35, 000 kilometres of fibre optics cable nationwide. However, the country needs around 95,000 kilometres to ensure complete coverage.  

He said,  

  • “I understand, as a minister, that if we prioritize fibre optic cables in this country, the quality of service, whether it’s through your normal mobile telephone or the internet service you use at home, is going to go off the roof, and that’s the commitment I’m also making. 
  • “In the next four years, we are going to do everything to increase the kilometres of fibre optic cables in Nigeria. We are about 35, 000 kilometres away, and we need to go to 95,000 kilometres, almost halfway there. 
  • “It’s going to cost roughly $1.5 to $2 billion to wire the whole of Nigeria to reach that 95, 000. 
  • “We hope we can accelerate in the next 6 to 12 months, secure that funding that private companies can tap into—it’s not government money—and hopefully work with serious companies that can lay fibre over the next two to three years. 
  • “We’re hoping that before the first four years of this administration, a significant portion of that 95, 000 kilometres will be covered,” he said.  

FG to Improve 5G Infrastructure in the Country 

The Minister also noted that the federal government is working to improve the infrastructural structures of the 5G network across the country, stating that there is still a need for developments to support such a high-quality network in the country.  

He stated that while such infrastructures are in place in some locations in the country, many people still experience low-quality of 5G networks due to a lack of infrastructural support.  

  • “The infrastructure that drives 5G is not something that is across the nation. We do in some places.  
  • “So, if you subscribe to 5G and you move into locations where the infrastructure cannot support it, of course, the quality will drop. 5G exists in Nigeria and there are telcos with the licence,” the minister said. 

Accordingly, Tijani shared some of the strides of his ministry within his first 100 days in office. 

What you should know 

A fibre optic cable consists of glass fibre strands encased in insulation, tailored for efficient long-distance data networking and high-performance telecommunications. 

Fibre optic cables surpass wired cables in both bandwidth and long-distance data transmission. They play a crucial role in supporting global internet, cable TV, and telephone networks. 


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