NCC remits N51.3bn to FG in three months

The Nigerian Communications Commission says it remitted N51.3bn to the Consolidated Revenue Fund of the Federal Government in the first quarter of 2019.

The remittance, according to the Executive Vice-Chairman, NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, is in compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2007 (FRA 2007).

The Act requires listed Ministries, Departments and Agencies to remit 80 per cent of their operating surpluses to the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

In a statement made available to our correspondent in Abuja on Monday by the Director of Public Affairs at NCC, Dr Henry Nkemadu, the payment represented operating surplus of N44bn and spectrum assignment fee of N7.3bn collected.

According to Nkemadu, both payments were due to the Federal Government as of April 30. The FRA 2007 requires such payments to be made every year after preparation of audited accounts of the concerned MDAs.

Section 17, Sub-section three of the Nigerian Communication Act (NCA, 2003) also stipulates that spectrum assignment fees generated should be remitted 100 per cent to the Federal Government.

Danbatta was quoted to have said that the regulatory commission had taken the initiative to be making payments into the CRF “as it generates revenue.”

He noted that through effective regulatory oversight by the commission, telecommunications sector had witnessed phenomenal growth since 2001, making it an enabler of economic growth and development.

The NCC boss was quoted to have said, “To date, telecoms industry has positively impacted all the sectors of the economy including banking, healthcare, commerce, transportation, agriculture, education and so on, with increased quarter-on-quarter contribution to the country’s Gross Domestic Product.

“From 2001 till date, telecoms investment has increased tremendously from $500m to over $70bn, just as the commission intensifies measures aimed at further facilitating investment growth in telecoms infrastructure to drive the economy, especially through the licensed infrastructure companies.

“We are also working with necessary stakeholders across all levels of government to address identified impediments to investment drive in the sector.”

He added, “The commission has since placed greater emphasis on broadband development as the next frontier for economic growth by driving efficiency and innovations in Nigeria.

“Consequently, through painstaking implementation of our Eight-Point Agenda with the need to facilitate broadband development topping the agenda, we have been able to increase broadband penetration to 33.13 per cent as at end of May, 2019.”

Danbatta also disclosed that as of May, there were over 173.6 million active mobile lines across mobile networks, corresponding to a tele-density of 90.98 per cent, adding that Internet subscriptions during the month stood at 122.6 million.

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