Spectrum Management

What is spectrum?

 The word spectrum refers to a range of invisible radio-waves that are around us which is used for communication purposes. This includes the FM (Frequency Modulation) or AM (Amplitude Modulation) radio broadcasts that you listen to and even other wireless forms of communication like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. The smartphone we have also uses these same radio waves to transmit data, and the difference really lies in the specific frequencies in use, and of course, the technology used to convert those waves into something useful. This could be the voice on the radio, the SMS we read, or the webpage we load.


Like other natural resources, Spectrum could be auctioned by the government (NCA) to companies which can be use to offer a number of services and recoup their investments as well as revenue for the nation.


Again, Spectrum refers to electromagnetic waves which can be generated by any electronic device hence the need to regulate its use. If Spectrum usage is not properly regulated, there would be total chaos, and that would lead to a lot of interferences, effectively rendering the Spectrum useless for any kind of meaningful communication. That's why the Spectrum gets divided into bands by the government (NCA). Now, just think of Spectrum as whole as the wide open ground, and think of bands as roads that are put up on it to help guide traffic in a regulated fashion


 Spectrum Management

The National Communications Authority like other Communication Regulators regulates the procedures and principles of allocation and assignment of radio frequency for effective Spectrum Management. 

This also includes regulating radio Communication Sector and controlling  procedures within the scope of natural laws, International Telecommunication Union (ITU) agreements and obligations to promote efficient use and gain a net social benefit.


The need to manage spectrum

As a finite resource, there is definitely the need to manage Spectrum and ensure an effective and efficient way of managing usage by all Stakeholders, Management also helps:

  • To conform to the ITU recommendations and international best practices of Spectrum usage.
  • To help avoid interference of Spectrum waves.
  • To curb illegal use of the Spectrum.


There are benefits of Spectrum management and these are outlined below:

  • For the consumer, it protects the consumer from interference problems.
  • For the regulator, it helps manage conflicts or interferences of the waves.
  • For the nation, it serves as employments opportunity for the people of the country, and also generates income or economic benefit for the nation.

Radiocommunication Services include the following:
A. Aeronautical Service

  1. Aeronautical HF Fixed and Mobile Stations
  2. Aeronautical VHF Fixed and Mobile Stations
  3. Aeronautical Station – Commercial (Control Station)
  4. Aeronautical Ground to Air Station (Glider, Hang Glider and Balloon)
  5. Aeronautical Ground Station (Airlines)
  6. Aeronautical Navigational Aid & Radar (Private Aerodrome)
  7. Aeronautical Radio Licence:
    • Aircraft (Take-off weight more than 3200kg)
    • Aircraft (Take-off weight more than 3200kg/less than 14000kg)
    • Aircraft (Take-off weight more than 14000kg)
    • Aircraft (Glider, Hang Glider and Balloon)

A. Aircraft Radio Licence

B. Land/Mobile Services

HF Fixed and Landmobile Stations
VHF Fixed and Landmobile Stations
UHF/SHF Fixed and Landmobile Stations

C. Marine Services

1. Marine HF Fixed and Mobile Stations
2. Marine VHF Fixed and Mobile Stations
3. Limited Coast Station
4. Ship Radio Station

D. Trunk Radio Network

1. Trunk Radio Network (Urban)
2. Trunk Radio Network (Sub-Urban)
3. Trunk Radio Network (Rural)

The process of applying for a radiocommunication licence is listed below:

  1. Applicant must obtain, complete and submit the relevant application forms together with the appropriate Application Fee.
  2. The National Communications Authority will acknowledge in writing, receipt of the application.
  3. The National Communications Authority will evaluate the application and respond to the applicant in due course.

All applications should be accompanied with a copy of the receipt of payment of the appropriate application fee as outlined in the


All payments to NCA should be made through Bankers Draft payable to the National Communications Authority.
The Application Fee is non-refundable

Table Of Frequency Allocation (8.3kHz – 3000GHz)