Nitel 'guided liquidation' too late

GOVERNMENT

-
Image: Titi Omo-Ettu, president of ATCON. By BiztechAfrica
Titi Omo-Ettu, president of ATCON

By Lukas Ajanaku, Lagos, Nigeria

The Federal Government of Nigeria's decision to toe the line of 'guided liquidation' of former state-run but now moribund telco, Nigeria Telecommunication Limited or Nitel and its mobile, arm, Mtel, has been described as wise decision that is coming a little too late.

Efforts by the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), the body charged with taking the government's interest in Nitel to the hammer have repeatedly ended in failure, making it appear that Nitel has been jinxed.

Reacting to the latest move by the government, telecoms operators in the country acting under the aegis of the Association of Telecoms Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), say that if guided liquidation will ensure that Nitel would be rested while efforts would be made to recoup whatever could from the firm, it is a welcome development.

Engr. Titi Omo-Ettu, president of ATCON, explained that the only advice he has for the people charged with implementing the guided liquidation is that they should remember that the moribund telco still has the licence of first national operator.

He says: “If by ‘guided liquidation’ [the government means] a process of resting the corporate name called NITEL and doing our best to recoup whatever we can from the whole project called NITEL, I think there is really no other choice than to do just that, except that it is coming three years late. It may then mean that my position in 2009 synchs with what has now been announced as reported in newspapers.

“The only contribution I have now is to advise whoever is implementing the guided liquidation that the company they are liquidating is still in custody of our First National Operator’s License. And that fact should guide them in guiding the liquidation,” Omo-Ettu said in a statement in Lagos, Nigeria's commercial hub.

According to the ATCON chief, media questions directed at him after the government’s decision had all taken the same tack: “What do you think of this?”

He says: “Honestly, I do not know because it seems to me that ‘guided liquidation’ or any liquidation at all, is a technical matter and I am not versed in the subject so I do not want to let that vocabulary stow into my thought process.

“I have since 2009 switched off all thoughts about Nitel when I considered that the final end had come came for the company. I went into the exercise of valuating the license that Nitel was holding and came up with a figure which hovered around USD2.2 billion. I did not keep it to myself. I called a press conference and explained the explainable part of the valuation and how it would guide us in knowing what the country stood to gain, or lose, if such estimation was required to guide a decision.”

“Since then I switched off in spite of the fact that newspaper journalists would not allow me to take my mind off the subject. Understandably so.”



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE GOVERNMENT NEWS

Kenyan capital adopts e-payment system

The Nairobi City County Government has moved to ease payment for services and streamline revenue collection by switching to e-payments. Read More

Congo-Brazzaville to launch digital governance agency

The Republic of Congo will soon launch a digital governance agency, to monitor and control the implementation of the country’s ICT projects.  Read More

Malawi launches Internet Governance Forum

Dr Edmund Katiti The Malawi Government and Nepad have launched the Malawi Internet Governance Forum in an effort to bring a semblance of order to the internet services in the country. Read More

Environmentalists welcome improved technology

Participants in a recent Monitoring For Environment and Security in Africa (MESA) conference in Botswana were upbeat about the new technologies that MESA is harnessing.  Read More

Kaberuka addresses Africa’s infrastructure gap at OECD

African Development Bank President Donald Kaberuka made a strong case for the importance of tackling private investment impediments in the African infrastructure agenda during the joint AfDB, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and International Growth Center (IGC) event in Paris. Read More

Kenya inaugurates USAC

Kenya’s new Universal Service Advisory Council (USAC) has been inaugurated by the Cabinet Secretary, Information, Communications and Technology.  Read More

Education Minister: ICT vital in schools

Botswana’s Acting Minister of Education and Skills Development, Mokgweetsi Masisi, has called for an increased uptake of ICTs in all schools in the country.  Read More

Innovation Hub introduces new offices

The Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) has opened two new offices to services its wider clientele base.  Read More

Orange, DRC govt sign fibre optic deal

PTTIC DRC Orange and the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo have signed a deal which will see Orange take control of the country’s fibre optic platform.  Read More

NCC presents telecoms governance code

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has launched a Corporate Governance Code for the telecommunications industry. Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage ERP AfricaSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionSage HR AfricaMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoice

FEATURED STORY

Widening ICT skills gap: Cause for concernWidening ICT skills gap: Cause for concern

Nigeria's FDI gains could be eroded by the widening gap in indigenous skilled ICT manpower, writes Kokumo Goodie.

IN DEPTH

Kenya rolls out e-extension to improve agricultureKenya rolls out e-extension to improve agriculture

In a bid to curb the overwhelmed number of agricultural extension officers in Kenya, the ministry of agriculture is embracing technology with their introduction of E-Extension services, which are aimed at reaching out to over 7 million farmers annually.

COMPANY NEWS

Schneider Electric introduces Smart-UPS fifth generation range to Southern Africa

Schneider Electric has announced that two next-generation models of its Smart-UPS uninterruptible power supply (UPS) units are now available locally.

VMware reports second quarter 2014 results

VMware, the global leader in virtualization and cloud infrastructure, today announced financial results for the second quarter of 2014.

New Sage ERP X3 version puts business information at your fingertips

Sage ERP Africa has announced the availability of Sage ERP X3 version 7, the latest version of its global business management solution for midsized companies.