By Michael Eboh & Emmanuel Elebeke
THE Federal Government has ordered all mobile telecommunication companies in the country to list their shares on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) or face sanctions.
Minister of Communications Technology, Mr. Adebayo Shittu, issued the order, yesterday, during the launch of the solar-powered Lumos Mobile Electricity solution, powered by MTN Nigeria in Abuja.
This was even as the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, stated that the ministry was considering an effective energy mix for the country, adding that the launch of the mobile electricity solution would also see the country achieve 30 per cent renewable energy deployment by the year 2030.
On the directives to telecom companies, Adebayo said it had become imperative for them to list on the NSE so as to give Nigerian citizens the opportunity to be part of the ongoing digital revolution in the telecom sector.
He charged the operators to, as a matter of urgency, address the perennial problem of poor quality of service, drop calls and unsolicited short messaging service (SMS). “You must get your companies listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange. I want to appeal to MTN and other operators to do the needful before Nigerian government wields the big stick. I want to urge you to do the needful so that Nigerian citizens can have the opportunity to be part of this revolution. To whom much is given much is expected,” Adebayo stated.
He said the partnership between MTN and Lumos will not only power telecom services but also provide light to local communities in Nigeria.
Speaking on the launch and roll out of the product, Chief Executive Officer, Lumos Global, Mr. Davidi Vortman, said the deployment of the product to households across the country would help increase access to electricity and also help address Nigeria’s epileptic power challenges.
He stated that presently, over 150,000 people across 30,000 locations in Nigeria were currently enjoying this innovative type of electricity in their homes and small businesses, which allows constant electricity for light, to charge phones all day and enjoy a fan and a television. Vortman noted that Nigeria has huge potential for solar electricity, adding that the cost of solar power is coming down, and Nigeria’s need for affordable, reliable, and clean electric power has never been greater.