Isa Pantami, minister of communications and digital economy, says the use of 5G technology could help the federal government in its fight against insecurity in the country.
Pantami said this at the official rollout of 5G network service by MAFAB Communications in Abuja on Tuesday.
Mafab Communications alongside MTN emerged winners of the 5G auction in 2021.
However, the telco was issued a five-month extension for its 5G network rollout by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).
Speaking at the event, Pantami said there are many economic benefits if 5G technology is leveraged.
He added that the government would take advantage of it to help the security agencies in their fight against insecurity.
“There are so many technologies and artificial intelligence to help our security institutions. All of them leverage effectively all 5G. So, this is in addition to economic benefits,” the minister said.
So, 5G allows real-time communications, and this has so many benefits to our security institutions if they leverage it because there are so many technological facilities in security that they leverage 5G to allow our security institutions to manage our security challenges effectively, like robots.
“The benefits of 5G deployment are beyond just quality of service. There are so many benefits because new technology comes along with new benefits like low latency, very high-quality broadband, and faster network and it allows real-time communication or almost near real-time communication, 5G can help with that.
“Today, using 5G virtual surgery is being conducted globally. They did this in the United States and also in China. They recently conducted a virtual surgery where the distance between the surgeon and the patient is over 3,000 kilometres, but the surgery was conducted successfully, and in China, they did it also recently.”
Pantami also lauded Mafab’s chairman for showing resilience and determination despite being a “new player”.
“Mafab has joined the queue. I congratulate the chairman of Mafab for his commitment to the success of Mafab. It is absolutely difficult to have a new player, who joined the sector within a small period of time and also to be competing with some of the active players in the sector,” he added.
On his part, Umar Danbatta, executive vice-chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), said the federal government under, President Muhammed Buhari, had created a pro-investment and pro-innovation environment, which saw the emergence of Mafab Communications.
In his welcome speech, Mushabu Bashir, Mafab chairman, said countries that can provide their citizens with the latest network infrastructure, which the 5G technology represents, will also be the ones that will thrive in the coming years.