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NCC launches nationwide cybersecurity awareness campaign

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has launched a cybersecurity awareness campaign nationwide to protect children from cyber criminals and their antics.

The campaign, attended by 24 public and private schools in Abuja, held on Tuesday, at the 650-seater conference hall of the NCC Head Office Annex at Mbora District, Abuja.

The significance of the event was seen in its attendance by three Ministers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

They include the Minister of Communications & Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), represented by his Special Adviser on Technical Matters, Dr. Femi Adeluyi; Minister of Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen, represented by her Special Adviser on Technical Matters, Princess Jummai Idonije; and the Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, who was also represented by the Director, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in the ministry, Abubakar Isah.

The event was also attended by officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Federal Capital Territory Universal Basic Education Board (FCTUBEB), the Federal Capital Territory Secondary Education Board (FCTSEB) as well as Management and other staff.

Representatives of the Ministers of Communications and  Digital Economy, and Women Affairs applauded the intervention of NCC in not only stimulating accessibility and availability of digital access to Nigerians but also making a priority the sensitization of  users, especially the younger generation on the proper use of the Internet and enlightening them on how they can be protected when using the Internet.

Addressing the students and other participants at the event, Pantami, who commended the NCC leadership for the cybersecurity awareness initiative, stated that as Federal Government is driving digital economy, through the ministry and its agencies, especially the NCC, it also places primacy on proper and continuous education of end-users of telecom services.

He said together with its various agencies, the ministry is working to implement the eight pillars of its recently-unveiled National Digital Economy Strategy and Policy aimed at unleashing robust digital economy where everything is ICT-driven towards accelerating economic prosperity.

Earlier in his address, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Dambatta, said the NCC-sponsored cyber security enlightenment programme has a specific interest in online protection of the youth especially the children both in public and private schools.

Indispensable internet

“It is an undeniable fact that the Internet has become an indispensable element of everyday life, for that reason, our children and youths are not excluded; they are highly involved in the use of new technology applications, especially since it provides opportunity for research, learning, communication, entertainment, and business for those with entrepreneurial minds,” the EVC said.

Dambatta explained that the pervasiveness of the Internet and the proliferation of mobile phones make it difficult for parents and guardians to effectively monitor the online activities of their wards in comparison to the old system of connecting to the Internet via desktops and laptops.

He emphasised that although the Internet provides countless opportunities for children, it also exposes them to potentially harmful content. He cited a United Nation’s report on Nations Populations Estimates and Projections, which looked at Nigeria’s population from 1960-2019, indicating that children and youths constitute a large portion of the country’s population. The report further indicates that the median age of the country is 18.4 years as of 2019.

Accordingly,  and based on other statistics, Dambatta said children and youths are the most active participants online via social media networking sites, making them potential victims of grooming, inappropriate content and exposure to unscrupulous actors in the cyberspace.

In addressing all of these issues towards protecting the young population against cybercriminals, the EVC said the Commission has instituted various initiatives.

Tackling Cyberbullying 

One such initiative, he said, is the ongoing awareness campaign to sensitise secondary schools children across the country to cyber-related crimes, such as cyberbullying, Internet fraud, identify theft, online soliciting of minors.

According  to the EVC, this explains NCC’s plan to educate many audiences on the necessary information and knowledge required to safeguard against cyber criminality in line with the Commission’s responsibilities as a regulator that is Irrevocably committed to protecting and empowering consumers of all ages and statuses.

Other initiatives include collaborating with key cybersecurity stakeholders to foster and engender a robust cybersecurity environment, and the involvement of the Commission in all the collaborative process that culminates in fashioning various cybersecurity policies, strategies and laws.

It also informed NCC’s involvement in the establishment of a Cyber Security Incidence Response Team (CSIRT) as well as the establishment of the Internet Industry Code of Practice by the Commission.

The foregoing according  to Dambatta was to ensure that industry-wide standards and obligations of minimum cybersecurity provision are implemented for the protection of child online and securing  communication infrastructure.

While noting that the fight against cybercrimes transcends geographic jurisdictions, Dambatta affirmed that the Commission is working to build strategic partnerships and collaborative alliances with stakeholders, agencies, and organisations to ensure safety of the cyberspace for users in Nigeria.

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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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