Omobola Johnson, Nigeria’s Minister for Communications Technology, has described the increase in the access to information and communications technology (ICT) as one of her ministry’s major achievements of 2012.
The ministry, set up 17 months ago, has increased the country’s teledensity ratio (the number of landline telephones for every 100 people) from 0.51 percent in 2011 to to 1.5 percent in 2012. The target is to hit 10 percent by 2015, she said.
In addition, the minister said the ratio of mobile subscriptions in Nigeria increased from 68.49 percent in 2011 to 71.54 percent in 2012. She hopes by the end of 2015 mobile subscription in Nigeria will have increased to 97.69 percent.
She also described the improved access of rural population to ICTs as another achievement of the ministry in 2012. In 2011, rural access was at 1.5 percent, while in 2012 it rose to 1.65 percent. Mobile phone coverage in rural regions of Nigeria rose to 40 percent in 2012. Experts project rural coverage to hit 60 percent by 2015 and 100 percent by 2017.
The minister mentioned broadband as another area where the ministry has recorded immense achievement, with broadband access speeds rosing from one percent in 2011 to 1.8 percent in 2012. By 2015, it is expected to rise to five percent.
The cost of annual 3GB broadband subscription has also been reduced from about 93,000 naira (US$595) to 72,000 naira (US$460) in 2012, while a further 50 percent reduction is anticipated by 2015.
Ownership of personal computers is hoped to rise from 4.5 percent in 2012 to 12 percent by 2015. Ownership of mobile devices is 60 percent and expected to raise to 80 percent in three years.