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We must utilize the power of ICT to contain insurgency–Dambatta

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Dambatta has said that Nigeria must utilize and appropriately deploy telecoms and ICT resources in the fight against insurgency and to contain other emergencies.

He affirmed that empirical knowledge of what ICT can do in tackling numerous challenges explained the commission’s insistence on compliance by all stakeholders to the guidelines governing SIM registration, and why NCC had been upbeat in getting the Emergency Communication Centres (ECC) ready all over the country as directed by the Federal Government.

Prof. Dambatta stated this on Wednesday at the Conference Room of NCC Head Office during the induction of the commission into the membership of Forum of Spokespersons of Security and Response Agencies (FOSSRA).

The NCC Vice Chairman was represented at the forum by Bassey Uket, a Principal Manager at the Commission’s Special Duties Department.

Mr Dambatta recalled the collaboration between NCC and the security and other emergency response agencies especially at the ECCs and suggest that many of the multi-faceted challenges can be addressed with scaling up the degree of deployment of electronic strategies.

To underscore the imperative of electronic and digital communication systems in managing the nation’s security challenges, Mr Dambatta stated that “as we are addressing the situation in one part of the country, you find escalation in another part of the country.”

He  also gave an example of the 112 Emergency Communication Numbers, which are routed to the ECCs, as “a practical implementation of a security system that is bringing succour to citizens in distress”.

The NCC Chief Executive added that he was gratified that there is an increasing “interface between citizens who are in distressed security situation and virtually all security and other emergency response agencies connected to it”.

Mr Dambatta described the ECCs as a well-conceived project. It is a project that has enhanced the capacity of agencies in the security governance sector to manage crises. He informed the audience that the Centres are well-equipped to address the purpose for which they were established.

He said 18 of the Centres, which are located in state capitals, have been completed and he assured that with support of the Federal Government “we are not going to stop. We would like to express our commitment to continue with the remaining 18. We would not rest on our oars until all other 18 are fully functional because the ECC have started attracting attention” and are quite central to the management of security in the country.

He emphasised that the ECCs have become a success story today because of the commitment of the Federal Government and the culture of dedication to continuity of strategic national projects by successive leadership of the Commission.

Earlier, Oluwatoyin Asaju, Director, Special Duties at NCC said FOSSRA, which was established 6 years ago by the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), has performed well in coordinating public information activities of security and emergency response agencies and has helped to improve inter-agency collaboration.

He said the induction of NCC into the forum is a testimony to the Commission’s strides in this regard and also the visionary leadership of the Prof. Danbatta.

He recalled the nature of operation and kind of facilities at the ECCs and urged Nigerians to use the Toll-Free 3-Digit Emergency Communication Numbers 112 to get help in times of security challenges.

Brigadier Onyema Nwachukwu, Director, Defence Information and Chairman of FOSSRA told the participants at the meeting that crisis is not peculiar to Nigeria and the present escalating trend speaks to emergent global culture where non-state actors resort to violence to express grievances.

He said agencies in the security sector are working all-round-the-clock to improve the nation’s security situation.

The FOSSRA’s role according to him is to bring the public to speed on the activities of the security forces. He affirmed that other issues needed to be addressed for the physical security provided by the armed forces to have better impact.

“One of these issues is national mobilisation of the mass media around the issues of security. Therefore, developing a national networking strategy of all stakeholders is important to address other challenges just as the challenge of inter-agency cooperation and collaboration among the security forces had been addressed.”

Air Commodore Yusuf Anas (rtd), the Executive Secretary of Crisis Communication Centre (CCC), also spoke about the efforts of FOSSRA in rallying information and communication stakeholders to ensure appropriate crisis communication management.

Commodore Anas expressed the gratitude of the Centre and other partners to NCC for the vital roles the Commission had played in enhancing the management of the Nation’s security communication programmes.

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Photo News: Emir Sanusi visits Sultan of Sokoto

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Aminu Abdullahi

The former Emir of Kano has on Monday paid a courtesy visit to Sultan of Sokoto Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar lll.

Kano Focus reports that the pictures of the visit were published on a Facebook page linked to former Emir named ‘Sanusi ll Dynasty’.

Though the reason of the visit was not stated, but the former Emir has paid similar visit to Lamido of Adamawa in his capacity as leader of Tijjaniyya sect in Nigeria.

Emir Muhammad Sanusi ll

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Kano to revive bilateral relationship with Pakistan

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Aminu Abdullahi

Kano State Government has expressed commitment to revive the long existing relationship with Pakistan.

KANO FOCUS reports that Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje gave the assurance on monday while receiving the Pakistani High Commissioner to Nigeria Muhammad Tayyab Azam at the Government House.

Ganduje represented by his deputy Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna said Kano endowed with lots of potentials is open for people to come and invest, particularly those from Pakistan.

“We are happy for showing commitment towards reviving the long relationship between us. I can remember the partnership we have in the engagement of Pakistani teachers in our schools which has yielded a lot today.”

“Even in the area of agricultural mechanization we have partnered with Pakistan especially in the supply of tractors to our farmers,therefore I feel if we continue to explore agriculture it will be beneficial to both Kano and Pakistan”.

The Governor also commended Pakistan for showing interest in reviving the bilateral relationship with Kano State.

In his remarks the Pakistani High Commissioner Muhammad Tayyab Azam described the visit to Kano as historic and important being the first state he visited since assuming office.

“I know the importance of Kano as hub of business in Nigeria, after Lagos Kano is next where there is business opportunity”.

“There was a time in Kano when most schools   have many Pakistani teachers..my aim is to bring back that relationship”.

He however pointed out that Kano and Pakistan have similarities in both values and culture therefore it is important to deepen the relationship so as to sustain the partnership in  the areas of health and agriculture as that will create opportunities for our people towards boosting the economy.

The High Commissioner was accompanied during the visit by Pakistani Consul General in Kano Ahmed Ibrahim Yakasai.

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ACF revives Kano chapter

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Aminu Abdullahi

The Arewa Consultative Forum ( ACF) has resuscitated it Kano State chapter and nominated a 14- member Interim Executive Committee to run its affairs for the next six months.

Kano Focus reports that the Forum has mandated the new leadership to organise a general congress that may elect a new council.

A statement issued on Monday by the publicity secretary of the Forum Bello Sani Galadanchi reported that at the inaugural ceremony presided by a member of ACF Board of Trustees, Halliru Akilu, the non- partisan voluntary organization also nominated delegates to its National Executive Committee ( NEC) engagements.

Akilu, a retired Brigadier- General, tasked the new leadership to work in unity, and restore all ACF organs and activities for the betterment of our society.

He stressed that the ACF which is apolitical, believes in the unity of the country, but aspires to see the glory of the north restored, and the economic fortunes of the region tapped for the greater benefit of our people and the nation as a whole.

In his acceptance speech, the new Chairman of the ACF Interim Committee, NaShehu Hassan Abubakar thanked the congregation for finding him worthy of the enormous responsibility.

Abubakar, a retired Air Vice Marshall (AVM) assured the ACF National body and people of Kano State of his determination to steer the ship creditably, selflessly and in strict compliance with ACF desire to improve the lot of our people, as well as agitate for their rights.

Other committee members nominated at the ceremony include Aishatu Yakubu Maijama’a (Deputy Chairperson); Shehu Aliyu (Vice- Chairman); Muhammad Mustapha Yahaya (Secretary); Sani Bala Tela (Assistant Secretary); Rabia Hussein Adamu (Treasurer); and Mairo Bello (Assistant Treasurer).

Others   are Mahadi Sadiq Abubakar, (Financial Secretary);  Hafsat Namadi Bebeji (Assistant Financial Secretary); Bello Sani Galadanchi (Publicity Secretary); Tanimu Ibrahim Getso (Assistant  Publicity Secretary); Kabir Mukhtar (Legal Adviser); Muhammad Kabir Haruna (Assistant Legal Adviser); and Azimi Namadi Bebeji (Auditor).

The inaugural ceremony attracted Youth and Women wings of the ACF whose members were nominated into both the executive committee and the NEC.

Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) is apolitical and socio-cultural association of leaders in Northern Nigeria formed in 2000 to protect Northern interest in the political scene.

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