Government spends N3.4bn on NigComSat
The federal government of Nigeria has declared that over US$9.3m (N3.4bn) will be spent on satellite company Nigerian Communications Satellite (NigComSat).
Despite the multi-million-dollar investments, NigComSat 1-R, the country’s primary satellite that is managed by NigComSat, has been under-used.
About 76% of the approved budget for 2020 will be used for recurrent expenditure, while the remainder will be spent on capital projects throughout the year. Most organisations that are supposed to do business with the company have been relying on foreign satellites instead.
Stakeholders in the industry have expressed concern over increased spending on NigComSat by the government. They have claimed that between 2011 and 2016, NigComSat spent more than US$60m of taxpayers’ money on recurring expenditure such as salaries, conferences, training, hotel and accommodation.
According to Samson Osagie, NigComSat’s executive director of marketing and business development, efforts are being made to reposition Nigeria’s satellite for optimum use.
He said: “While the global space economy hit US$348bn in 2017, Nigeria’s share of the market remains insignificant despite possessing a satellite with full capacity.
“NigComSat is in talks with all stakeholders to form partnerships that will boost the patronage of Nigeria’s satellite.”