ATCON urges FG to adopt technologies in future elections

March 15, 2019
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Association of Telecommunications Companies in Nigeria (ATCON) said that Nigerian government can leverage telecommunications technologies for a less cumbersome electoral process with a view to conducting better elections and deepening the country’s democracy.

Olusola Teniola, president, ATCON, said that Internet of Things (IoT) and AI can be fully leveraged over the ubiquitous 4G network in the country.

In an interview withNational Daily, Teniola, said that what is important is the adoption of full automation of the electoral process where minimal human interference is the norm.

With IoT, according to Teniola, all devices can be used to select the candidate that the electorate support from their phones, tablet or smart feature phones, and if need be, from terminals connected to a broadband network that users may have access to.

He, however, lamented the inability of the current finance industry in Nigeria to satisfy and commit to high risk, long term capital requirements of the telecom industry.

The ATCON number one officer says infrastructure deficit alone stands at conservatively, USD$10 billion per year for at least the next thirty years.

Teniola expressed the need for intelligent investment and capital to fill this gap, noting that it was high time that a fund or bank that provides specific capital towards telecom infrastructure was created to encourage further telecom network roll-outs and capacity improvements.

Commenting on the recent revelation by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) that Nigeria is home to 75 per cent of eWaste in the world he said the sad narrative may not change as long as Nigeria is predominantly an import-dependent country as far as our consumption of technology goes.

He further stressed that it was very important that the government strengthens its monitoring and control functions to ensure eWaste is drastically reduced; explaining that collaboration among stakeholders would address the issue.

On the nagging issue of multiple taxes and levies paid by telecom operators, Teniola expressed confidence that having a unified, harmonious and ‘law-abiding’ regulatory environment will ensure that the numerous demands made by stakeholders no longer exist.

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