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NIN-SIM linkage: Kano residents hail FG for extending deadline



Aminu Abdullahi

Some residents in Kano state have commended the Nigerian Communication Commission NCC for an extending NIN-SIM linkage deadline to June 30.

KANO FOCUS recalled that the commission had on May 4 announced the extension on May 4 to allow mobile users linked their SIM with the National Identification Number.

Some people interviewed with Kano Focus appealed to the commission to redouble its sensitization of the linkage in rural areas.

Musa Ibrahim said that as the country has the highest population in Africa the prolongation is good and it will help others to link up their sim.

He added that he linked his four sims since it is important to tackle the insecurity in the country.

“The extension doesn’t mean the government would not block the sim cards of those who refuse to link up their sim with NIN but it’s an opportunity for them before the government to make a final judgment.

“We know that if NCC had stopped the linkage earlier many people would have lost their sim cards but the additional time will help,” he said.

Muhammad Umar said some people might not abide by the rules even if the federal government would extend it to 2023. He said they could only be proactive when government start to sight an example by blocking their sim card.

” They will start complaining again but as a Nigerian, I must give my loyalty to the government by linking up my number.

“We don’t understand, why always shifted please pantami do your work block all sim without NIN,” he said.

Yusha’u Usman said that government should stop deceiving Nigerian by so-called NIN registration since bandits are low on themselves and can communicate wisely to collect ransom from people.

He further said that the way they extend the date indicates that government is not serious about the security situation in the country.

” I can swear after June 30 they may extend it again and again,” he said.

He also called on the attention of the NCC to look into the issue of BVN between banks and NIMC, as many Nigerians made changes of names or date of birth in their banks for almost a year or two and it is not reflecting on the NIMC server.

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Danbatta: Kidnappers release Igbo businessman



Mukhtar Yahya Usman

Kidnappers have released the Igbo business man abducted last Friday in Danbatta local government, Kano state.

Kano Focus exclusively reports that Mr Emanuel Eze regained freedom after paying an undisclosed ransom.

Mr Eze’s neighbor Salisu Abubakar Kore told Kano Focus that he was contacted by the kidnappers to drive the businessman home on Thursday night.

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“I was called around 1:30am and directed to pick him up in Ringim, Jigawa state.

“When I reached Kanya Babba I was rerouted to Gidan Lage, Garki local government, Jigawa state where I picked him around 2:30am.

“We arrived Kore in Danbatta local government, Kano state by 5:30am but he instructed me to proceed to Kazaure, jigawa state where he reunited with his brothers.” Mr Kore said.

The Kano Police Command Public Relations Officer, Abdullahi Haruna Kiyawa has confirmed Mr Eze’s release.

Mr Kiyawa, a deputy superintendent of police said the command has received tips about the kidnaps whereabouts and is in the process of hunting them down.

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Federal govt to commence Kaduna-Kano rail line project in June



Nasiru Yusuf

The federal government said the extension of the Abuja-Kaduna rail line to Kano will begin by end of June.

KANO FOCUS reports that the minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, stated this during the official commissioning of the Lagos-Ibadan rail line project on Thursday in Lagos.

According to him, “we have about three or four projects. This month, we will start Kano-Kaduna and then we will also start Port Harcourt to Maiduguri which also is done by CCECC and then Kano-Maradi.”

“While we are celebrating that, we are not be happy that up until now, the China Exim bank is yet to approve the loan for Ibadan to Kano because we need to start that and complete it quickly because that is my fear.

“We are grateful that the Chinese government through the China Exim bank was able to give us the loan at a concessionary rate to construct from the seaport. We hope that we get money to be able to construct from Ibadan to Kano so that we can complete the track and make sure that business takes place.

“We got money from China Exim bank, we paid back. We did put pressure on CCECC and delivered on time. In terms of quality, what we have is of good.”

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NCC concludes cost-based study on international termination rate determination



Nasiru Yusuf

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has concluded the process for determining the cost-based price of Mobile International Termination Rate (ITR) to ensure healthy competition on traffic handling for voice services between local and international operators in Nigeria.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Commission made this known at the final Stakeholders’ Forum for the presentation of the study on cost-based pricing of mobile ITR, undertaken by Messrs Payday Advance and Support Services Limited, held at the Commission’s Head Office in Abuja on Tuesday, June 8, 2021 with Management Staff of the Commission physically in attendance while other critical industry stakeholders participated virtually.

A statement sent to KANO FOCUS by commission’s spokesperson Ikechukwu Adinde said the forum was convened by the NCC to formally present the findings from the study, which commenced in March, 2020, to industry stakeholders and to solicit further perspectives, insights and other input on the findings towards a mutually realistic termination rate for international voice traffic in Nigeria.

Speaking at the forum, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Umar Garba Danbatta, said the cost-based study became imperative, following previous efforts at finding an optimum price for the termination of international voice services that will be beneficial to all relevant industry stakeholders.

Danbatta said that the “overriding need for regulatory options and intervention in relation to the international termination rate in the voice market segment is predicated on some intractable challenges, most common with economies with severe macroeconomic volatility such as ours.”

Going down memory lane with respect to MTR determination in the Nigeria’s telecom industry, the EVC said, in 2013, the Commission issued a Determination stating that mobile Termination Rates (MTR) are the same irrespective of where the call originated. He, however, stated that this was misconstrued by operators at that time to mean that ITR should be the same rate as the MTR, consequently ignoring the international cost portion.

“Arising from these is the persistent fact that Nigeria’s ITR is below that of most countries with which it makes and receives the most calls, making Nigerian operators perpetual net payers. The obvious implication of this is seen in the attendant undue pressure on the nation’s foreign reserves, which continue to get depleted by associated net transfers to foreign operators on account of this lopsidedness,” Danbatta explained.

Danbatta further stated that regulating the ITR is imperative for developing countries, such as Nigeria, with volatile currencies in order to prevent or mitigate the imbalance of payments with international operators. He also said the Commission was faced with the challenge of arriving at a rate that will balance the competing objectives of economic efficiency while, at the same time, allowing operators the latitude to generate reasonable revenues.

He informed the forum however, that “where ITR is not regulated, it tends to converge to the MTR and for a market like Nigeria with major supply side challenges, the socio-economic implications and attendant backlash can only be imagined.”

In her comments, the Director, Policy, Competition and Economic Analysis, NCC, Yetunde Akinloye, corroborated the EVC, noting that the study was intended to compliment and consolidate the initial work done by the Commission which had also culminated in the MTR Determination published in June 2018.

According to her, the ITR previously determined was based on actual benchmarking with countries of similar characteristics to Nigeria, but the findings from that study were faced by major national macroeconomic management challenges, ultimately pointing to the need for an ITR that is cost-based, consistent with the MTR.

ITR is the rate paid to local operators by international operators to terminate calls in Nigeria as contrasted with MTR, which is the rate local operators pay to another local operator to terminate calls within the country.

Meanwhile, Danbatta has reiterated the NCC’s commitment “to continuously provide a conducive environment and level playing field for the effective interplay of factors that would engender sustained market development and growth, while ensuring the provision of qualitative and efficient telecommunication services to the consumers”.

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has concluded the process of determining the cost-based price of Mobile International Termination Rate (ITR) to ensure healthy competition on traffic handling for voice services between local and international operators in Nigeria.

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