The Lagos State Government has begun its Smart City initiative with the unified fibre duct infrastructure and connectivity project across all its Local Government Areas and Local Community Development Areas.
Information gathered showed that the state is pushing this via a Special Purpose Vehicle through the Western Telecoms and Engineering.
The project will enable planning of fibre routes in accordance with developmental and social needs of the state with demography and geographical considerations, and will also help diffuse claims of the country and state laying 5G cables.
The fibre duct connectivity will afford broadband service providers to lease infrastructure from duct infrastructure owners under a state government open access driven plan to control the design of the fibre duct and other fibre routes with input from telcos, infracos, and towercos for commercial viability.
Also the fibre duct connectivity allows the neutrality of players and avoids conflict of interest.
The project has also been supported by key telecommunications industry players both locally and internationally and outsourced to an independent civil engineering asset management company.
Western Telecoms explained that: “Lagos fibre duct infrastructure project is bedrock of Lagos Smart City initiatives in driving E-traffic, E-transport, E-health, E-education, and E-governance, which are linked to the six pillars of development (THEMES) of the Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s administration.
“It also allows the MNO’s (Mobile Network Operators) with fibre coverage in Lagos State to have multiple fibre ducts on the same routes. The current system of multiple RoW approvals along the same routes is inefficient and does not conform to global best practices.”
The company noted that the Nigeria Communications Commission has maintained that RoW approvals is beyond its power, and has mandated all licensees to seek such approvals from the State or Federal Government agencies.