By Kadiri Abdulrahman/Jessica Dogo
Information Technology and Shared Services Provider of the Federal Government, Galaxy Backbone, on Wednesday took steps to secure its fibre optic cables for internet services on some road construction sites in Nasarawa state.
Some management staff and a team of engineers from the company embarked on a field trip to some of the construction sites where some of the cables had been uprooted to allow construction works to take place.
Leading the team, Prof. Muhammad Abubakar, the Managing Director (MD) of Galaxy Backbone, said the road construction was an important aspect of infrastructure development as much as the cables.
“The cables are also important as part of national assets which should be protected.
“The Galaxy Backbone will work with the construction company and the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing to ensure that damage to the cables during construction was reduced to the barest minimum.
“Road construction is not going to stop any time soon because roads are integral to development and progress of the nation but we should also take steps to protect these cables.
“The cables provide essential internet services to a cross spectrum of public and private concerns across the country and any damage they suffer will disrupt the service.
“ We have to begin to observe international best practices whereby national assets such as this are factored into construction of roads and other infrastructure.”
According to Abubakar, the removal of the cables had greatly affected the company’s operations adding that the line from Lagos through Enugu , Makurdi to Akwanga are down.
“It means our customers on this line are not getting the services they deserve, and we experience several hours of low connectivity,’’ the MD said.
He assured that the company was already taking steps to liaise with the Ministry of Works and Housing to ensure that construction work across the country did not have so much effect on the cables on road corridors.
He said that although the cables could not be relocated until the construction was completed, the company was working with the local communities to ensure that they were not stolen or vandalised.
Mr Auwalu Salisu, Head of Network Services, who was also on the team, said that Galaxy Backbone had a Network Management Centre which could detect any disruption in services and address the situation.
He said that about 175 kilometers of cables had already been badly affected on the Nasarawa road corridor.
Salisu added that the company had received complaints from some government departments as well as some private companies about constant interruptions in internet services, which prompted the field trip.
“We have a network management centre, whenever there is disruption we mobilise our teams to address the situation.
“We have had complaints from some government ministries and some private companies.
“We have already lost several kilometers of cables due to the road construction but our immediate step is to ensure that they are intact while the construction continues,’’ he said.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) observed that a long stretch of fibre optic cables, from Sabongida in the outskirts of Keffi, to Garagu near Akwanga, all in Nasarawa, had been uprooted by construction workers and left exposed. (NAN)
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