Musing on the appointment of Senator Durojaiye Olabiyi as NCC chairman

August 4, 2016
3 min read

Agricomm Field Service announced the appointment of Atiku Abubakar; Nigeria's former Vice-President(1999-2007) as its Chairman. The news was well received as I have come to regard and respect the politician in matters relating to enterprise solutions.

According to a report by the News Agency of Nigeria(NAN), Agricomm provides extension services to over 25 million farmers nationwide.And considering the fact  that the former VP is a farmer himself who is also into the production of livestock nutrition, it all fit like gloves.

In the same vein, NatCOM appointed Theophilus Danjuma as the new chairman of ntel.

Suggested Read: NatCOM appoints Theophilus Danjuma as new chairman of ntel.

And I was excited at a prospective restructuring I saw in the offing, because when you have the 30th richest man in Africa on your board especially one with as much knowledge as the retired general, things are bound to change.

Personally, I postulate that he came on board to protect his investments in the company.

The end of June and the first week of July saw a lot of shifts and appointments with important people taking the reins of important organizations. I was not surprised when President Buhari announced a new chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

Suggested Read: Senator Olabiyi Durojaiye appointed as new NCC Chairman.

The Senator's background

Having served meritoriously in public service for over three decades, the economist and lawyer had worked with the International Monetary Fund(IMF), Federal Reserve System of the United States of America and the City University London. As a lawyer, he was called to the bar in 1979 and is a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

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Senator Durojaiye was even more of an astute firebrand as a political office holder. Calling for life jail terms to be given perpetrators of election fraud, and also refusing to gang up towards the impeachment of the then president; Olusegun Obasanjo.

He was even supposed to be a candidate for the 1993 presidential elections that M.K.O Abiola ran for on the platform of the Social Democratic Party.

The obvious choice?

The aforementioned pointers are supposed to give you an overview of the calibre of man that is taking over the helm of affairs as chairman of the NCC; a dogged titan.

Realistically, do all these qualifications apply to the office?

Professor Umar Danbatta -- the Executive Vice-Chairman of the NCC --, got his doctorate in Electrical and Electronics Engineering and Telecommunications Engineering as far back as 1992. It is true that degrees and educational qualifications are not always applicable, but I believe they are relevant in the case of managing the body responsible for regulating Nigeria's telecommunications industry.

Sadly, since his appointment, social media has been awash with calls for the 83-year-old senator to reject his position based on his age. With the youth spearheading and calling him "our ancestor".

But the call is a misplaced priority as age does not have anything to do with professional competencies.

I am only worried that this is happening in an era when telcos are being crippled by a multiple taxations problem and are still trying to stifle the subscribers with a Do Not Disturb Code that was meant to help them in the first place.

Suggested Read: Understanding DND: The pains and gains of stopping unsolicited text messages.

In this same time that the NCC cannot effectively fine a defaulting telco and make them pay, the regulatory body needs a seasoned hand steering the ship.

I do not know how Senator Durojaiye is looking to maneuver in this unfamiliar terrain, but as a man that has excelled in every of his endeavour, I hope he excels. Because only excellence in leadership can salvage the battered image of the NCC and check these errant telcos.

tech. media. startups. africa. vc | Twitter: @victor_ekwealor
tech. media. startups. africa. vc | Twitter: @victor_ekwealor
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tech. media. startups. africa. vc | Twitter: @victor_ekwealor

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