Jidaw Systems

The ISM Frequency Band and Internet Service in Nigeria - A Response

From Afam Nnaji of  Lagosestores

Hello Chineme,

Your article on The ISM Frequency Band and Internet Service in Nigeria is wonderful.

However, I need to state here that we (Nigerians) should learn to develop this attitude of doing things right and at all times for that matter.

If the frequency band isn't for commercial purposes then commercial Internet service providers should quit the frequency band.

We do not need to introduce politics and sentiments on the issue. Why can't Nigerians learn to develop these equipment from scratch? Must we import technology all the time? This idea of getting equipment from outside this country as if information technology is another buying and selling business isn't going to help Nigerians at the long run, we may be happy now if what you are advocating for works but at what cost in the future?

It might interest you to know that the frequency band in question isn't popular as far as commercial internet service is concerned all over the world though few people still make you use it.

About the economical part you mentioned, nay loss of jobs, it's akin to saying that stopping smuggling will create loss of jobs too.

The bottomline? Let commercial Internet service providers use commercialized frequencies. Need we make simple things complex?

Many thanks for your time.

Warmest regards,

Afam Nnaji



And  Chineme Obuba's Response to Afam's comments:

Hello Afam

I agree with you in that regard of doing the right thing at the right time but remember it is a matter of policy. You should first realize that the ISM band is a gray area the standards differ from one country to the other the free frequency range is different in Japan, UK and the USA. So in Nigeria it could be different too.

I have always believed by the way in adopting unique solutions to unique environments. The fact that the west has put those frequencies aside for Industrial Scientific and Medical purposes doesn't mean we have to follow suit. For lets face how many of such institutions make use of these frequencies?

I would be happy to have Nigerians develop solutions to use but my bet is that even you who wrote me this mail is probably sitting on a non Nigerian PC using non Nigerian software and by the way selling non Nigerian goods on you estore

It is all well and good to want Nigerians to produce our on technology but while we do that we need to face the reality that we have to make do with foreign goods until we develop ours. By the way when last did you look inside a made in USA computer?

Motherboard made in Korea, keyboard made in china, monitor made in Japan assembled in Mexico. Bottomline: no country is technologically independent. Nigeria is not manufacturing because of the basic problem, which we have always had: infrastructure.

If we are assured of these infrastructure i.e. electricity, water and good roads we would perform to world standards but when a businessman/developer remembers the high cost of providing these things for himself he gets scared.

The problem as i see it is policy inconsistency you wake up one morning and suddenly you are told that the business you have been doing for years is no more legal. It has happened times without number and by now we should know that this is a democratic state  we must have the peoples opinions on such matters before putting them to action.

Before I forget that same frequency is in use by ISPs all over the world and banks too by the way so why target only ISPs for the use of the frequency? Why not banks? Most banks have a larger wireless network than many ISPs that I know. Are banks Industrial, Medical or Scientific?

The picture is clear it is an attempt by privileged few to have a super ISP and fix rates arbitrarily. The other day i received a letter from an ISP which a cafe my company runs subscribes to. the cost of leasing their equipment is 100,000 Naira one off cost and the for 32K dedicated internet access per moth we where asked to pay an additional 63,000 to the 120,250 Naira we were paying previously.

I guess that should give you food for thought as to what you are really asking for. Think about the end users to add the cost of fuel and tell me honestly what one should charge cyber cafe customers per minute to keep his business afloat

Interesting fact: the NCC is technically an illegal commission it was empowered by a military decree

Chineme Obuba MCP CCNA

Network Administrator

Access Point Communication Limited


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