The minister for Science and Technology, Prof Turner Isoun has said that 50 percent of all the bandwidth that would be available on the Nigeria Communication Satellite NICOMSAT has been sold. The satellite is to be commissioned in March next year.

Speaking with This Day, the Minister said the demand for bandwidth on the satellite which is expected to be commissioned next year had been very high both within and outside the country. Isoun also said that based on the successful launch of the first Nigerian satellite, NIGERSAT 1, many countries and international organisations had requested to be part of the NICOMSAT, not only as users, but also as investors. He said, "several countries have written to Mr. President that they want to be part of it. not only do they want service now, but also that they want to invest."

The minister continued, "50 percent of the bandwidth have been completely sold out. buyers include even users outside the country."

On what instigated the vision of the satellites in the first instance, Isoun said, "we want to prove that we can do it. Before then, nobody believed that we can do it. They were saying what's this satellite thing all about? But now we have regained our confidence in ourselves."

On whether the cost expended in the first project was worth it, Isoun responded this way. "When people ask me when we are going to recover the money spent on NIGERSAT, I tell them that we have recovered it already because we have our confidence back."

This Day