National Association of State Assembly Legislators (NASAL) has honoured the Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Professor Umar Danbatta with a National Service Excellence Award.
NCC Director of Public Affairs, Dr Ikechukwu Adinde, said this in a statement on Tuesday, in Abuja.
While receiving the award on behalf of the EVC, Adinde, appreciated NASAL for the recognition and said the award was an encouragement and a challenge for the NCC boss to do more.
“It is heartwarming that NASAL has found our EVC and CEO deserving of this award. The award is an acknowledgement that his accomplishments have not gone unnoticed. We at the NCC, value this gesture, which writes the history of Danbatta’s achievements in a very distinctive and enduring way”.
Adinde amplified the justifications adduced by NASAL for recognising Danbatta, by citing various indicators that measured the performance of the telecom sector, which clearly showed that the sector has been growing over the years and more impressively, in the last five years.
“From the recent industry statistics and other relevant macro indicators, the telecoms sector, has recorded positive growth in terms of active voice subscriptions, internet subscriptions, teledensity, broadband penetration and contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP)”.
He noted the last five years of Danbatta’s administration had witnessed a number of policy initiatives that spurred industrial growth and improved service delivery.
Adinde restated the EVC’s commitment to ensuring that the Commission maintained its reputation as a foremost communications regulatory organization.
Earlier, NASAL Director General, Mr Uchechukwu Chukwuma said the award was to recognise the remarkable leadership role by Danbatta in deepening the development and growth of the telecoms sector at the grassroots.
Chukwuma said the award also recognised the pivotal role of the EVC as a change agent, a catalyst for national development and a great Nigerian patriot.
He said in the last five years, NASAL, as the body of state lawmakers in the country, has consistently monitored the activities of the Danbatta-led NCC and observed notable improvements in telecoms services across state constituencies in Nigeria.
“Danbatta’s efforts have manifested in enhanced access to the Internet by our people, which has given them the opportunity to participate and ventilate their views constructively. As you know, citizens’ participation in political activities is one of the attributes of an ideal democracy and Danbatta has helped to promote this ideal. The NASAL’s award to the EVC is justified by the statistics from the Commission which showed that when he came on board five years ago, 217 access gap clusters were identified in the country, With 40 million Nigerians excluded from access to telecoms services. Five years after, however, the access gaps have reduced to 114 clusters with additional 15 million Nigerians now connected.