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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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TCN creates Kano transmission region

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Nasiru Yusuf

THE Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has carved out a new Kano transmission region from the old Kaduna Region. 

KANO FOCUS reports that the newly established unit brings the number of TCN regional centres to 10.

The TCN believes the step will improve commercial activities in the state.

A statement issued by TCN General manager of Public Affairs Ndidi Mbah explained that the creation of the Kano Transmission Region became necessary owing to the rapid economic and industrial development being witnessed within Kano State and its environs, as well as the gradual implementation of TCN’s strategic ‘Nigerian Electricity Grid Maintenance, Expansion and Rehabilitation Programme (NEGMERP),’ which has enabled the transmission company to complete some ongoing projects and increase the number of substations within that axis.

He said the  Kano Transmission Region had, under its supervision, one sub-regional office and several work centers, all housing 13 transmission substations (TS), including the Kumbotso TS, Dan Agundi TS, Dakata TS, Tamburawa TS, Kwanar Dangora TS, Wudil TS, Kankia TS, Katsina TS, Daura TS, Dutse TS, Hadejia TS, Azare TS, and Gagarawa TS.

The new Kano region currently according to the statement has ongoing transmission substation projects which when completed would further increase bulk transmission capacity in the new region.

The new Kano Transmission Region, the company said, would deepen operational efficiency within the region and enable its engineers to readily access and resolve technical issues within the new region.

Mbah explained that prior to the creation of the new Kano Region, major decisions had to be referred to Kaduna Region for directives, and the supply of materials was sometimes delayed due to logistic issues from Kaduna.

Mbah noted that the proximity of the new region would radically reduce downtime and eliminate time lost when materials had to be conveyed from the Kaduna Region.

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DSS arrests singer accuse of blasphemy

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Department of State Services have arrested another blasphemous singer, Ahmad Abdul, whose song was perceived to create chaos in Kano state.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Singer Ahmad Abdul was detained by the DSS because his free movement may likely cause violence reaction from Kano residents.

While in detention, Mr Abdul tender apology to entire Muslims, Kano state government and Islamic Scholars.

He told DSS operatives that he never thought that the song has violated Islamic teachings.

Commenting while witnessing the bail condition granted to Mr Abdul at the DSS Headquarters, Kano, the Executive Secretary of the Kano state Censorship Board Ismaila Naaba Afakallah recalled that he had received hundreds of petitions against the song from concerned citizens.

Afakallah said having realized the gravity of the song’s blasphemy, he reported the singer to DSS who swung into action and arrested him at a Hotel where he was hiding for days.

Mr Abdul Father, Abdullahi Isa thanked the DSS for their timely response on the matter which saved possible outbreak of law and order.

Also in August last year, An upper Sharia court in the Hausawa Filin Hockey area of the state has found one Yahaya Sharif-Aminu guilty of committing blasphemy for a song he circulated via WhatsApp.

However, the appellate division of the High Court of Kano State had on January 21 quashed the death sentence passed on Mr Sharif-Aminu and freed him.

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I’ll not run for President – Muhammadu Sanusi II

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Deposed Emir Sanusi

Mukhtar Yahya Usman

The deposed Emir of Kano Malam Muhammadu Sunusi II says he is not interested in contesting for the presidency of Nigeria.

Kano Focus reports that Mr Sunusi revealed this at a Tijjnaniyya zikir held in Abuja on Thursday.

Muhammadu Sanusi said his current position as Tijjaniyya Khalifa in Nigeria is superior to the presidency.

The deposed Emir however said he is ready to help those he believe in their competence to win elections without his participation in politics.

“If we trust a candidate is out to serve the people, we will come out and help them.

“That is not joining politics but a civic duty to the nation and its citizens” Mr. Sanusi said.

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