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Pantami receives National Broadband Plan 2020-2025 Report

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Nasiru Yusuf

Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, has received the draft report of the National Broadband Plan Committee 2020-2025.

The report was presented to him in his office by the Chairman of the Committee, Ms Funke Opeke, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), MainOne Cable.

The Committee is co-chaired by Dr. Bashir Gwandu, former Executive Commissioner Technical Services at Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), while Engr. Ubale Maska, NCC’s Executive Commissioner Technical Services is the Secretary of the Committee.

In attendance at the presentation ceremony were members of the Committee including the Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of NCC, Professor Umar Garba Dambatta was also present at the event.

Dr. Pantami first inaugurated the Committee on 16 December 2019 to develop a new National Broadband Plan 2020-2025 that will be a guiding template for further development of the telecommunications sector.

This followed the expiration of the 2013-2018 National Broadband Plan which was designed to achieve at least 30 percent broadband penetration in Nigeria.

At the expiration of the old plan, Nigeria had achieved 37.8 percent broadband coverage.

At the inauguration of the new NBP Committee, Pantami also urged the members to review the old plan, examine its challenges and proffer solutions.

He equally urged the committee to undertake the assignment in the context of growing and emerging technologies.

The new broadband plan, being developed with the support and collaboration of the Government of the United Kingdom (UK), is expected to increase broadband penetration to 70 percent by 2025 in order to give concrete expression to Federal Government’s commitment to making Nigeria a truly digital economy.

It will be recalled that on January 3, 2020, while engaging the Nigerian press at a Media Briefing and Chat, Dr. Pantami promised that the report of the new NBP Committee will be ready in the first quarter of the year 2020.

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Just in: Finance Minister suspends Accountant-general over alleged N80bn fraud

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Aminu Abdullahi

The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Dr. Zainab Ahmed, has suspended the embattled Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, from office over his alleged involvement in N80billion fraud being investigated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

KANO FOCUS reports that Idris was arrested on Monday by the operatives of the anti-graft agency over alleged diversion of funds and money laundering activities to the tune of N80billion.

He was arrested after failing to honour invitations by the EFCC to respond to issues connected to the fraudulent acts.

EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, in a statement, had said the commission’s verified intelligence showed that the AGF  raked off the funds through bogus consultancies and other illegal activities using proxies, family members and close associates.

He said the funds were laundered through real estate investments in Kano and Abuja.

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Kano experiences heavy rainfall in next three days – NiMet

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Nasiru Yusuf

 

 

The Nigeria’s meteorological agency, NiMet, has forecast moderate to heavy rainfall within the next three days in Kano.

KANO FOCUS reports that NiMet announced this in its weather advisory on Tuesday.

“As a result of the expected moderate to heavy rainfall in the next three days, there are chances of flash flooding of roads and low-lying settlements,” the agency said.

It added that “there could be disruption of traffic due to flooded or closed roads, reduction in visibility, likely damage to mud houses and possible disruption in flight operations.”

The rain is expected to be accompanied by strong winds, lightning and thunder, hence the falling of weak buildings and displacement of makeshift structures are likely, NiMet said.

Hence, it advised the public to exercise restraint, disconnect electrical appliances before, not during the storm, and avoid standing or parking cars under trees as much as possible.

NiMet urges emergency agencies to be prepared and keep monitoring to avoid low-level areas and fast-flowing runoff waters.

It also advised the public to be prepared for these events to avoid damage from rain-related hazards.

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VP Osinbajo visits scene of  Kano explosion

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Nasiru Yusuf

 

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has visited the scene of Kano explosive where he commiserated with the government and people of Kano state over the gas and explosion at Sabon Gari area of the state capital.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Vice president arrived at the scene of the explosion in company of Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje.

Osinbajo during the visit to the scene of the incident expressed shock that little school children were among those injured.

The Vice President who described the incident as devastating, sympathised with the victims and enjoined relevant authorities to take preventive measures against future occurrence.

He prayed for the repose of the souls of those who lost their lives and quick recovery of injured victims.

The Vice President and governor Ganduje were received and briefed by the Commissioner of Police Kano Command Sama’ila Shu’aibu Dikko.

Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje thanked the vice president for the concern and pledged medical and financial support to victims of the explosion.

The Vice President was in Kano to meet APC delegates ahead of party’s primary elections.

At least nine people are confirmed to have died in an explosion in the Sabon Gari area of Kano state on Tuesday morning.

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) in a statement said nine corpses have been recovered from the scene of the explosion.

NEMA’s spokesperson, Manzo Ezekiel, said the Director-General, Mustapha Habib, who visited the scene of the explosion, coordinated the rescue operations.

Mr Ezekiel said: “Nine dead bodies have been recovered so far from the rubbles of a collapsed building beside a primary school following explosions from a gas cylinder at Aba Road in Sabon Gari area of Kano.

“Director-General National Emergency Management Agency, Mustapha Habib Ahmed, was at the site of the incident and coordinated the rescue operations.

“He mobilised excavators being used for the rescue operations and said NEMA team will ensure complete removal of the rubbles to retrieve all trapped persons.

“Furthermore, the DG instructed the NEMA rescue team to remain at the site until the conclusion of the rescue and to work together with security agencies and other response organisations present at the location.

“NEMA is presently coordinating the rescue operations involving members, Nigerian Red Cross, military, the Nigerian Police, Nigerian Security and Civil Defense Corps, Kano SEMA, the official statement said.

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