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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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Kano domesticate social protection policy

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Abdullahi Ganduje

Nasiru Yusuf

Kano state governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has approved the domestication of National social protection policy in the state.

Kano Focus reports that the Social Protection Policy is designed to show the commitment of the Government to the effective mobilisation and efficient utilisation of state resources to improve the quality of life of its citizens.

The state Commissioner of planning and budget Nura Muhammad Dankadai revealed this on Friday at a one day interactive session with with journalists and civil society organizations.

Alhaji Nura Muhammad Dankadai

Mr Dankadai said governor Ganduje approved the domestication of the policy on Thursday.

According to him when domesticated the policy will provide legal framework for school feeding programme, ante natal and post natal care, addressing gender based violence and protecting people living with disabilities.

On the meeting with journalists, Mr Dankadai said it was aimed at intimating them with on the state government’s projects and received some inputs for possible submission to the government.

The commissioner uses the opportunity to appeal to civil society organizations and journalists to sensitise people on the current economic challenges which made it difficult for the state to pay workers salary for the month of March.

In their separate contributions Akibu Hamisu, I. G Maryam and Wali Ado Rano advised Kano state government on the need to address multiple taxation, grant local government financial autonomy and holding periodic interactive session with CSOs and journalists.

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AKTH honours NCC Boss UG Danbatta

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Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission, being presented with an appreciation award by Prof. Abdulrahman Sheshe, Chief Medical Director, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital (AKTH), Kano, during the courtesy visit.

Nasiru Yusuf

 

The management of Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital has visited the Executive Vice Chairman of Nigerian Communication Commission Umar Garba Danbatta.

Kano Focus reports that during the visit the AKTH team also presented an award to Danbatta as an expression of the hospital’s appreciation for the enormous contributions of the EVC and the Commission to the development of health institutions over the years in the country.

Speaking during the visit, the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of AKTH, Abdulrahman Sheshe, who led the delegation on the courtesy call, said, “the objective of our being here today is to appreciate your contribution in person and as EVC of NCC to the growth and development of the teaching hospital.”

According to Sheshe, through the support and donations from Kano people like the EVC and institutions like NCC, the hospital has increased its bed capacity from 250 to 700, as well as performing 57 successful transplant surgeries.

“You have also made enormous contributions in this regard and that has helped us to get new dialysis machines through your assistance and these machines are being put to use, aside from other state-of-the-art equipment already in place,” he said while appreciating the EVC.

The CMD, however, sought NCC’s support in the area of a Health Information Management System (HIMS) and digital capacity for staff.

Responding, however, Danbatta thanked the hospital management for the visit and the award, noting that the Commission supports federal institutions with necessary ICT equipment across the country and is ready to assist AKTH in this regard.

Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta

“As a Commission, we are working to bridge the infrastructure divide, which is an element of the entire digital ecosystem. We do this via a lot of ongoing regulatory initiatives. And, through our training arm, Digital Bridge Institute (DBI), we provide digital literacy to critical sectors of the economy, including the health sector, we also intervene through our Advanced Digital Appreciation Programme,” he said.

According to Danbatta, digital divide can be bridged by making computers available and ICT services accessible to people and key sectors of the economy.

Danbatta (middle) flanked by top management committee of AKTH and NCC staff during the courtesy visit

“Infrastructure that can host this massive flow of information and knowledge is broadband infrastructure and this is top-most in the agenda of the Commission. Indeed, ICT is transforming every sector of the economy and the earlier we embrace the vast opportunity brought by ICT the better,” the EVC pointed out.

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Police arrest bandit who abduct his uncle for one million Naira ransom

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Abubakar Musa displaying the two AK-47 ripples

Nasiru Yusuf

 

 

 

Police in Kano said they have arrested a 27 year old Abubukar Musa who confessed to have abducted his uncle and received one million Naira ransom.

Kano Focus reports that the police spokesperson in Kano Abdullahi Kiyawa announced this in a video clip sent to journalists on Sunday.

He said the suspect was arrested with two AK 47 ripple suspected to be used for kidnapping and banditry.

Mr Kiyawa said preliminary investigation revealed that the suspect is among the bandits terrorizing some parts of Kano, Birnin Gwari in Kaduna state and some Northern states.

Mr Musa an indigine of Rurum village in Tudun Wada local government Kano state recalled how in the past abducted his uncle and collected one million Naira ransom before he release him.

The suspect also told police that he borrowed the guns found under his possession from Muhammadu Bakanoma in Zamfara state to confront another bandit called Malam at Birnin Gwari whom he accused with abducting his wife and daughter.

“I am a cattle rustler. I once abducted my uncle Alhaji Haruna and my cousin Bappan Jauro six years ago. These are the only two persons I have ever abducted. I abducted him (Alhaji Haruna) because his two children (Medi and Bappan Jauro) have kidnapped my younger sister Hafsat.

” I released him after receiving one million Naira ransom. We are now living with him (Alhaji Haruna( in the same compound,” Mr Musa said.

Mr Kiyawa said investigation is ongoing and will issue a statement when completed.

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