Connect with us

Headlines

Pantami frowns on Ganduje, 13 other govs for raising tariff on telecoms infrastructure

Published

on

Nasiru Yusuf

The federal government has expressed dismay over the decision of some states to increase the ‘Right of Way’ charges in disregard of the resolutions reached by the National Economic Council (NEC).

Kano Focus reports that 14 states including Kano, Lagos, Anambra, Ondo, Cross River, Kogi, Osun, Kaduna, Enugu, Adamawa, Ebonyi, Imo, Kebbi and Gombe, have hiked the cost of Right of Way (RoW) for telecoms infrastructure.

Although, the cost of RoW on federal roads is N142 per linear metre, many states have increased the cost of RoW from the initial fee of between N300 to N500 per linear metre to between N3,000 and N6,000 per linear metre.

This newspaper understands that one of the agencies responsible for the increase in the RoW charges is the Kano State Urban Planning and Development Authority (KNUPDA).

The implications

Telecoms operators across networks had blamed the poor telecoms service currently being experienced by subscribers on the refusal of state government agencies to grant the operators the RoW licence to lay more fibre optic cables in cities.

Telecoms subscribers have continued to face networks challenges, ranging from incessant drop calls and poor connectivity, to delays in delivering text messages, among others.

A statement issued by the Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Pantami on Tuesday called on state governors, especially those that have made public their decisions to increase the RoW charges, to reconsider these decisions in the interest of Nigerians as well as for the socio-economic growth and development of the country.

Mr Pantami noted that, these decisions, if implemented, will result in an increase in the costs of operations of the telecoms operators which will naturally be passed to the consumers.

The minister recalled that in 2013, National Economic Council (NEC) set up a committee comprising state governors and ministers to review the issues of multiple taxation in the telecommunications industry in Nigeria and its impact.

He said the Committee, after extensive and wide-ranging consultations, resolved to harmonize the taxes applicable to broadband-related activities and streamline the taxation management processes across the federation, specifically, to deepen broadband penetration for the social and economic development of the Country.

The committee according to the minister agreed to the uniform Right of Way (RoW) charge of N145.00 per linear meter of fibre.

Mr Pantami recalled that in October 2019, the ministry had written all the state governors, drawing their attention to these resolutions and soliciting their support and collaboration towards the realisation of the National Digital Economy by fast-tracking the deployment of broadband infrastructure for the provision of affordable internet services to under-served and un-served areas.

“It is true that the digital economy today is strategically dominating the world economy. Oxford Economics puts the current value of the digital economy at $11.5 trillion which is about 16% of the world economy.

“Furthermore, the World Economic Forum revealed that 60% of the global economy is expected to be digitised by 2022. With the renaming of the Federal Ministry of Communications to Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy as well as the unveiling of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy by Mr President, we are on the path of realising the potentials of the digital economy.

“It is, however, disheartening to hear that some States have decided to disregard these resolutions and have, in some cases, increased the RoW charges by over 1,200%. This will no doubt impact negatively on the efforts being made by the Federal Government. It is established that there is a strong correlation between a country’s broadband penetration and its Gross Domestic Product (GDP). An ITU study on Africa indicates that a 10% broadband penetration would result in an increase of 2.5% of GDP per capita,” the minister lamented.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Headlines

Naira Freefall: EFCC arrests 7 BDC operators in Kano

Published

on

Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

No fewer than seven Bureau De Change operators and others have been arrested by the operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC on Wednesday in Kano state.

KANO FOCUS reports that the persons were arrested by the operatives who carried out a raid on the BDC operators at the popular forex exchange WAPA market in Fagge local government area.

The Chairman of the market, Malam Sani who confirmed the development to newsmen in Kano, said the operatives raided the market in search of hoarders of dollars.

Wada however maintained that members in the market don’t engage in hoarding and are all operating with licenses from authorities.

“It was a joint taskforce that raided the market in search of those who are hoarding dollars and causing the depreciation in the value of Naira.

“They have arrested no fewer than seven individuals, some of them are our members and others are only passerbys. They said they are going to screen them to confirm who is who. We are yet to meet the taskforce now.

“All of them were arrested randomly and non of them was arrested carrying even a dollar on him.

“The WAPA Forex Market is licenced and there are no fewer than two hundred licenced individual outfits here in the market. All our operations are operating within the ambit of the law.

“When they struck, they hindered activities in the market as people closed down there offices, however things have since returned to normal.

“I advised the authority to implore the whistleblower tactic to track down those who have Dollars hoarded. But there is no Dollar anywhere in the market at the moment. Nobody has it. Even if you see it, it will not be more that $100 or $200 that’s all. We don’t have Dollars.

Continue Reading

Headlines

Education Summit: Kano Govt frowns at late coming to school among pupils

Published

on

Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

 

The Kano state government has expressed displeasure over staggering lateness among pupils, warning that it will not condone late coming to school by children.

KANO FOCUS reports that the commissioner of education Alhaji Umar Haruna Doguwa gave the warning on Tuesday at a two-day education summit organised by the government in conjunction with Adolescent Health and Information Projects AHIP, PLANE, CSACEFA and Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF).

Doguwa said said the government would collaborate with Hisbah corps to monitor students who move around the streets during school hours and take action them.

Alhaji Umar Haruna Doguwa

At the Summit with the theme, ‘Towards Strengthening Retention and Completion of Girl’s Education‘, the commissioner informed participants of strides of this administration in revitalising and fortifying the education sector with focus on empowering and retaining girls in the school system towards completion.

According to him “the government is collaborating with European Union EU and other development partners to improve education in the state.”

He noted that, to improve better system, the government would also constitutes Council on Education and Education data bank for effective monitoring.

Diginatries at the event

Recognising transportation barriers, Doguwa explained that, Kano state government has reintroduced dedicated 57 shuttle buses for girl students in the state to ease transport.

The commissioner said; “Within the 8 metropolitan Local Government Areas. We are currently looking at the ministry of Education proposal of expanding the shuttle bus service coverage to reach remote and underserved areas.”

ACF representatives at the event

Speaking on lack of schools attendance by students, he said the government would collaborate with Hisbah paramilitary to monitor students who move about the streets during school hours and take action them.

The Director Adolescent Health and Information Projects, Hajiya Mairo Bello identified education as the first foundation of life, stressing that “AHIP is determined to promote Girl Child Education not only in Kano state but the entire Northern Nigeria.”

She said other thematic areas of AHIP includes youth Development programmes, Women Empowerment initiatives, Health promotions, life skills training, Community Mobilization and Networking and Gender and Social inclusions among others initiatives.

Diginatries at the event

“Our Adolescent girls must retain and complete their education for Nigeria’s brighter future and economic prosperity,” Hajia Bello said.

She noted that promotion of education is moral responsibility of all, adding that her NGO is ready to partner with the Kano state government and others to advance the course of girl child education.

Representatives of Traditional Institutions

Also speaking, Professor Ismail Mohammed Zango while presenting findings from a Research conducted on Exploring the Adolescent Girls’ Education in Kano state said, school attendance completion ratio in Kano indicates that boys seems to complete their junior and senior secondary Schools more than the girls in Kano state.

He stressed the need to bridge the gap, identifying critical roles of parents in achieving Girls retention and completion of schools.

Zango also identified poverty as a great factor to school retention and completion of girls Education.

The Chairman Arewa Consultative Forum ACF Kano Chapter, Dr. Goni Umar Farouk called on the business community to contribute to Education and not leave it to the hands of governments a lone.

He also, called on the Kano State government to invest in ICT Education of children as the world is going digital.

 

Continue Reading

Headlines

Kano Assembly directs KAROTA, PHCMB, KPP to refund N260m misappropriated funds

Published

on

Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

 

The Kano State House of Assembly has ordered the Kano State Road Traffic Agency, Kano State Primary Health Care Agency and Kano Printing Press to refund a total sum of N260 million misappropriated by the three agencies.

The Assembly issued the order during plenary presided by the Speaker, Jibril Ismail Falgore, on Tuesday.

The Assembly indicted the three state agencies for misappropriation of allocations and internally generated revenue.

In a unanimous adoption of the recommendations of the House Committee on Public Accounts, the Assembly cautioned all ministries, agencies and parastatals to comply with due diligence on public finance or face sanctions.

Earlier, the Chairman House Committee on Public Account, and member representing Fagge constituency, Mohammed Tukur, who presented the 2021 audited public account, expressed concern over financial ‘iniquity’ in government agencies.

In the report, Tukur narrated how allocations on COVID-19 and social welfare programs got zero release of funds while the construction of 100 pit toilets with an estimated budget of N200 million secured 100 per cent capitalisation.

The Fagge lawmaker also lamented how the previous administration refused to approve the audit of six years of public account, leaving behind a backlog of unaudited public expenditure.

Tukur equally raised concern about the misuse of public revenues and allocations by the Kano State Road Traffic Agency, Kano State Primary Health Care Agency and Kano Printing Press, which were indicted in the report.

The Majority Leader, Lawan Husain, moved a motion to compel the auditor general and accountant general of the state to ensure proper accountability and transparency of public funds and refund of misappropriated monies by MDAs.

Continue Reading

Trending