by Linda Ikeji
The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Ali Pantami has reacted to the controversy 5G network has ignited on Nigeria’s social media space in the last few days.
In an interview on Channels Television’s News At 10 on Sunday April 5, the Minister said he is yet to see any research linking 5G network with Coronavirus amid the discussion on the safety of the network.
Pantami dismissed speculations about the network and its safety, and further stated that the government does not take decisions based on online speculations.
“Firstly, it is not what is said online that government will work with. We are always taking decisions based on the opinions of experts, based on research.
“When it comes to health, we have (the) World Health Organisation and many health bodies.
“I just want you to bring out any research which they have conducted and (in which they) made their position about 5G’s relationship with COVID-19. I am yet to see anyone from the World Health Organisation.
“This is a body that accommodates our experts in health globally. We have ITU, the International Telecommunication Union.
“I just challenge you to let me know one expert or ITU as a body or any other professional body that conducted research and also made it public that this is the position.”
The Minister who revealed that the trial of the 5G network was conducted in Nigeria in November 2019 after it was stalled for about two months, said the government is expecting the recommendations from the stakeholders before deciding whether or not to deploy the 5G network.
“There is no approval for any operator to deploy 5G; this decision will be taken after research and we are taking our time. Many countries deployed 5g – the US, UK, Germany, South Korea, India, and many more.
“We are not in any way rushing; we are more interested in doing an extensive investigation so that we will be able to come out with something tangible.”