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NCC begins review of telecoms license structure

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has initiated the process for the review of existing licensing structure in the Nigerian telecommunications industry. 

KANO FOCUS reports that an important step towards achieving this was taken recently by the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta when he inaugurated an in-house Standing Committee to carry out the task.

In a statement sent to KANO FOCUS by commission’s spokesperson Ikechukwu Adinde, Danbatta, while inaugurating the Committee, said the need for the review of the existing license structure was informed by the wide range of technological advances, convergence of technologies and services which have characterized the global telecoms space over the years, and which impact is increasingly being experienced in Nigeria.

According to him, the current license structure is almost 20 years old, hence the need for an urgent review of the existing license pattern to reflect new licensing trends in line with international standards while providing opportunities for improved revenue for government.

“Therefore, it is evidently clear that this Standing Committee, drawn up from competent hands in various departments of the Commission, is perfectly suited and capable of addressing the enormous task of reviewing the existing license structure of  telecom licensees in Nigeria,” he said.

While noting that the work of the Standing Committee will be carried out in phases, Danbatta said effective delivery of the Committee’s task will help the Commission to institute a process, which will culminate in the review of the terms and conditions of the various license categories.

These, he said, will include licensing fee, as well as identification of the limitations of the various license categories, with a view to clearly determining licenses that should be phased out or amended.

Specifically, Danbatta outlined Management’s seven-point deliverables from the Committee to include a comprehensive review/report on existing licenses; report and recommendations on consultative fora; and report on recommended new license undertakings.

Others include a report on recommended amendment to license fees and durations; a report on benchmarking of license with similar jurisdictions, a report on the impact of certain licenses on other license holders.

The Committee is also expected to recommend solutions as well as the develop updated regulatory framework for new and amended licenses as the case may be; and a final report on the project with all recommendations.

Also speaking during the inauguration of the Committee, the Director, Licensing and Authorisation, NCC and Chairman of the Committee, Mohammad Babajika, assured the Commission’s Management of the Committee’s resolve to deliver on the terms of their assignment.

At the end of the Committee’s assignment, and following due consultations with industry stakeholders, the Commission envisages a new draft framework for new and amended licenses.

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Kano is the biggest sesame market in Nigeria – Ganduje

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Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna

Nasiru Yusuf

Governor Dr.Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has said that Kano with its commercial potentials being the biggest agricultural commodity hub in Africa is also the biggest Sesame market in Nigeria.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Governor represented by his Deputy Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna stated this on thursday in Kano while declaring open a Sesame seed conference with the theme “Developing the Sesame seed value chain for sustainable growth” organised by the National Sesame Seed Association in collaboration with Kano State Government.

Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna

According to him the conference will create an avenue for stakeholders in the industry to identify the most effective ways to promote value chain development in the Sesame seed sector and to also discuss mutually beneficial trade opportunity so as to improve economic development and livelihood of smallholder farmers.

The Governor described sesame seed as the most sought cash crop in terms of export value in Nigeria, being one of the fastest growing sectors due to its foreign exchange earning and as a main source of income for about 5 million smallholder farmers.

He however assured that his administration is committed to towards enhancing the production of sesame both in terms of quantity and quality through financing,improved techniques and productivity.

The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Muhammad Sabo Nanono in his remarks highlighted the interventions given to the National Sesame Seed Association in the development of the sub-sector include the distribution of high yielding black,white and brown variety sesame seeds to boost productivity.

Alhaji Sabo Nanono

Similarly, he said 20 sesame cleaning machines were also distributed, in addition 2 model sesame processing centres were established in Nassarawa and Kano States respectively.

On her part, the Minister of state for Industries,Trade and Investment Maryam Katagum represented by a Deputy Director Irimiya Kaura explained that the ministry is committed towards providing enabling environment that will enhance the competitiveness of Nigerian agricultural commodities in the global trade.

She also revealed that in continuation of developing sesame seed,the ministry is implementing a robust agribusiness and industry development initiative to draw investment to the non oil sector in the country.

Speaking earlier the President of the National Sesame Seed Association of Nigeria, Sherif Balogun stated that for the past 5years they have been working assiduously to promote the sesame seed value chain as well as increasing the production from 300,000 metric tons to over 500,000 tons.

He therefore called on the public to engage in massive sesame production and processing in order to benefit from government policies like the Anchor Borrowers Programme.

While appreciating the Kano State Government for partnering with them in organising the conference,he also commended Governor Ganduje for his support and effort towards making Kano a destination for agribusiness investment.

Munir Babba Dan’agundi

The event was attended by the Jigawa State Commissioner of Agriculture Muhammad Alhassan who represented Governor Badaru Abubakar, Chaiman House of Representatives Committee on Agricultural Institutions Mannir Babba Dan’ agundi and other stakeholders.

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Kano refutes trending story on women driving ban

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Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje

Nasiru Yusuf

Kano state government has described as fallacious a trending story on social media platforms on a purported plan to officially disallow women regardless of any faith from getting behind the wheel.

KANO FOCUS reports that the state commissioner for Information, Muhammad Garba who made the clarification in a statement issued on Thursday, said government had at no time contemplate on the matter.

He said the story, which could not be traced to any credible source, was nothing but the imaginary thinking of the authors.

“The trending story lacks any credibility and that is why it is wholly attributed to a source that cannot be substantiated,’’ it added.

Mr Garba pointed out that if at all there was such plan, the state government does not have to be involved in any secretive meeting to decide on a critical issue that has to do its teeming populace.

The commissioner stated further that even Saudi Arabia which for decades had laws that sanctioned women from driving has, after all, lifted the ban in 2018.

He said it was interesting that some of the scholars quoted to have supported the alleged ban have already dissociated themselves from the story.

Clerics denied the story

Earlie on Wednesday, some clerics alleged to have floated the ban Salisu Shehu, Abdallah Gadonkaya and Sani Rijiyar Lemo have all refuted the story.

In a text message sent to KANO FOCUS Shehu described the story as ‘completely false and mischief.’

“It is completely false. It is a mischief. I think some wicked people are desperate about causing unnecessary confusion, controversies and disaffection among Kano Scholars,” he said.

Rijiyar Lemo alleged that the story was concocted by Shiites who were not happy with the outcome of clerics debate with controversial Kano preacher Abduljabbar Kabara.

“Our attention has been drawn to a fake news in circulation, claiming that some ulama in Kano, including my humble self, have tabled a plan to stop women from driving in the state.

“This story, in all certainty, was hatched and being peddled by some Shi’ite elements, who are not happy with the outcome of AbdulJabbar’s saga.

“You are urged to discard this false story. May the Almighty protect us from the evils of our enemies,” Rijiyar Lemo said.

Gadonkaya, on a Facebook post described the story as ‘fake news’.

“I, Abdullah Usman Umar Gadon Kaya strongly say that this is a fake news. I don’t have any hands in it. It’s the act of enemies who want to  crack peace in our dear state (Kano) and Nigeria at large,” Gadonkaya said.

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Court sends undergraduate to Prison for N1m fraud in Kano

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Nosa Ekhatoro

Nasiru Yusuf

The Kano Zonal Command of the  Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC today has on Wednesday secured the conviction of one Nosa Ekhatoro before Justice Hafsat Yahaya Sani of the Kano State High Court.

KANO FOCUS reports that the convict was arraigned on a two count charge of conspiracy and theft to the tune of one million Naira.

The convict’s journey to prison started when the Commission received petition alleging that he and one Ogie (who is still at large) conspired and stole one million Naira from the bank account of the complainant through hacking.

Count two of the charge read that “You Nosa Ekhatoro on the 9th of November, 2020 at Kano within the jurisdiction of the Kano State High Court committed theft of the sum of N1, 000,000 by taking it out of the possession of Nagarba General Enterprises from his bank account domiciled in UBA and you thereby committed an offence punishable under section 287 of the Penal Code”.

The convict pleaded guilty to the two counts.

In view of his plea, counsel for the prosecution, Douglas Gift, urged the court to convict him accordingly.

Subsequently, Justice Sani convicted and sentenced the defendant to six months imprisonment with the option of N100, 000 one hundred thousand Naira fine.

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