The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, on Saturday said no licence has been issued for 5G in Nigeria.
The Minister’s comment comes amid rumors circulating on social media that 5G technology causes COVID-19, the coronavirus disease that has put most of the world on hold.
In a statement issued over the weekend, Pantami said the President Muhammadu Buhari administration will never seek technological advancement at the expense of the health and welfare of its citizens.
“The attention of my office has been drawn to the public concern about the health implications of the deployment of Fifth Generation Mobile Networks (5G) in Nigeria. Based on available records at my office and the earlier report received from the regulator, I would like to clarify as follows:
i. The National Frequency Management Council (NFMC), of which I am the Chairman, has not deliberated on or released any bulk frequency spectrum for the deployment of 5G;
ii. No license has been issued for the deployment of 5G in the country;
iii. A 3-month study trial commenced on the 25th of November, 2019 in order to critically review and study the health and security implications of deploying 5G in Nigeria;
iiii. As part of the study trial process, I directed the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to ensure that a team of experts, security agencies and other stakeholders fully participate in the trial process and my office also invited these agencies to participate in the trial; and
v. The trial process has been concluded and the study and reporting process is currently ongoing.
“His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, places a premium on the welfare, health and security of Nigerians. As such, our desire for technological advancement will never be at the expense of the health and welfare of our citizens.
“Government will not act on the speculations only, but rather we will take an informed decision on 5G after due consultation with experts and the public. I have also directed the NCC to engage citizens on any questions or concerns they may have regarding 5G.
“I wish to thank the general public for reaching out to us on this issue. We advise you all to remain rest assured that government will always take the welfare, health and security of the public into account while considering the deployment of any technology”, he stated.