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

Search News

comments powered by Disqus

MORE GOVERNMENT NEWS

ComTech minister: Appropriate legislation critical to telecom sector growth

Nigeria’s Communications Technology Minister Adebayo Shittu, has said appropriate laws will be made to guarantee the consolidation of the gains of the telecoms industry.  Read More

Water utilities to introduce USSD service

Botswana’s Water Utilities Corporation (WUC) will soon officially launch a service using Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD), for its customers throughout the country.  Read More

Scatec Solar secures 100 MW Solar Project in Nigeria

Scatec Solar has signed an agreement with CDIL, a Canadian renewable energy development company focused on Africa, and BPS, a Nigerian strategic consulting firm, securing the 100 MW (DC) Nova Scotia Power plant located in Jigawa State, Nigeria.  Read More

Tackling cybercrime requires new skills, says minister

Nigeria's ComTech Minister, Adebayo Shittu, says new skills are needed to address the global threat of cybercrime. Read More

Unsolicited SMS: We’ve given subscribers choice, says NCC

Nigeria’s telecoms sector regulator, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) says it has given subscribers the power to choose between receiving unsolicited messages or not through the enforcement of the DND code on the telcos. Read More

NITDA seeks NCC collaboration for 50% GDP growth

The acting Director-General of Nigeria’s NITDA is seeking the collaboration of the NCC to develop the country’s ICT industry to enable it to contribute about 50 per cent to the nation’s GDP. Read More

Amosun, Danbatta settle disputes over 47 BTS shut in Ogun

The outstanding issues which have kept 47 base transmission stations (BTS) under lock and key in Ogun State have been successfully resolved by the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof Umar Garba Danbatta. Read More

ComTech Minister: NITDA recruitment fraudulent

Nigeria’s Minister of Communications, Barrister Adebayo Shittu, has described the last recruitment exercise at the Nigeria Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) fraudulent as it did not follow due process. Read More

Buhari advised on national addressing system

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has been advised to establish a national addressing system in the country to check the crime rate in the country. Read More

Science & Tech Minister: We’ll deepen R&D

The Minister of Science and Technology has identified poor funding and ineffective coordination as reasons Nigeria’s technological development has remained stunted.   Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage EnterpriseSAP AfricaTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoiceMicrosoft 4AfrikaNetworks UnlimitedArbor NetworksEricssonTigo Ghana

FEATURED STORY

Financial services sees AI as both opportunity and threatFinancial services sees AI as both opportunity and threat

Banking is already a key area where technology is having an impact throughout Africa, and a new survey assesses the impact artificial intelligence will have on this sector.

Advertisement

IN DEPTH

Access and Use of ICT stats releasedAccess and Use of ICT stats released

Statistics Botswana has released the first results of the 2014 Information and Communication Technology Household Survey.