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[February 18, 2014]
QoS: Airtel is set to invest massively in Lagos [Sun, The (Nigeria)]
(Sun, The (Nigeria) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) BY BISIS OLALEYE Airtel Nigeria's Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Segun Ogunsanya, has disclosed that Airtel is set to make additional investment in Lagos State, following the reduction of the Right of Way (ROW) by the Fashola-led administration. He explained that penetration of telecoms services could be faster if other states could emulate the pedigree of the Lagos State Government, saying: "The issue is not about Quality of Service (QoS) but getting more approval for base stations, which will translate to increase in transmission capacity." Ogunsanya, who was speaking with select ICT journalists in Lagos on the company's roadmap for 2014, disclosed that after the initial investment of $600 million that was targeted for three years when the company rebranded, it has also invested another $1.5 billion in Nigeria over the last three years for network expansion and that data account for 20 per cent of the company's revenue and 70 per cent is for voice.
He, however, assured Nigerians of the company's policy of improving QoS and transforming the company into an Internet brand of choice in the following months as well as focusing on support of local communities will be the major focus for this year.
"We want people to see Airtel as a local business that is part of a local factory doing great in the country," he said.
He denied that the Telco may sack more workers in the nearest future, while disclosing that over 900 people were employed for outsourcing service in Ibadan and other states of the federation. Stressing that outsourcing increases employment opportunities in any economy and that there was no directive from the Board to sacrifice any staff but that in the last one year at the helms of affair he had enjoyed tremendous co-operation from the staff, which has helped in repositioning the company to another enviable heights.
The Airtel boss, also appealed to relevant authorities in all tiers of government to mete out punishment for people who cut fibre and thereby obstruct telecommunications services. According to him, several things are connected with the network and if there is any slightest down time, it affects the whole chain of networks.
When prodded on the 2.3Ghz and the Nigerian Communications Commission's (NCC) submission of empowering subscribers to sue operators, Ogunsanya stressed that, Airtel may not bid for it but is rather looking at other means to deliver broadband to the larger community since data is growing much more than voice. While adding that Airtel is a corporate organization that will always work hand in hand with the telecoms umpire to move the industry forward.
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