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NCC Highlights Measures to Deepen Internet Connectivity for Businesses, Nigerians

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has explained some of the key measures it is taking to ensure broadband and internet connectivity impact businesses and individual teelcoms users in Nigeria.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Commission has also stated how instrumental the ongoing implementation of the new Nigerian National Broadband Plan (NNBP), 2020-2025 and its Strategic Vision Plan (SVP), 2021-2025 can drive development of new technologies and local content in Nigeria.

According to the Executive Commissioner, Stakeholder Management (ECSM) at NCC, Adeleke Adewolu, who spoke at a breakout session at the recent 2021 Annual General Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association, which took place in Port Harcourt, one of the key policy instruments that guide the development of the sector is the NNBP.

“The Nigerian National Broadband Plan (NNBP), 2020-2025 has four critical pillars which are:  Infrastructure, Policy, Demand Drivers and Funding/Incentives,” he said.

He asserted that the NNBP is unique in many respects. One is the fact that it clearly defines ‘broadband’ for Nigeria as “connectivity delivering a minimum of 10 Mbps in rural areas and a minimum of 25 Mbps in urban areas to every Nigerian at an affordable price and quality.”

On the other hand, he said the Strategic Vision Plan (SVP) 2021-2025 is a template developed by the NCC to streamline regulatory focus for better efficiency, in alignment with relevant policy instruments.

“For the next five years, the Commission is focusing its energies on five strategic pillars. These are: Organizational renewal for operational efficiency and Regulatory excellence; Provision of infrastructure for a digital economy which fosters national development; Improved Quality of Service (QoS) for enhanced Consumer Quality of Experience (QoE); Promotion of fair competition, inclusive growth, increased investment and innovative services; and Strategic Collaboration and Partnership,” he emphasised.

Adewolu declared that “the impact of connectivity on businesses and the economy, in terms of the impact of internet connectivity on businesses and the national economy is well documented.”

He recalled that 10 per cent increase in mobile broadband penetration results in approximately 0.6 per cent to 2.8 per cent rise in Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Furthermore, he affirmed that everyone is a witness to the revolutionary impact of the internet connectivity for agriculture, health, education, information and communication, as well as entertainment.

This is besides notable revolution in banking and financial services as we can see in the deployment of Automated Teller machines (ATMs) and banking software.

“All industries now rely on internet connectivity provided by our mobile networks to function, such that it is impossible to imagine life without connectivity.

“In concrete terms, the Nigerian telecommunications industry has continued to lead national economic growth,” he said.

According to him, in recent years, the telecoms sector has consistently driven the growth of the Nigerian economy and has provided critical infrastructure powering the digital transformation of practically all spheres of life.

Adewolu said that in the second quarter of 2021, the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector sustained its growth trajectory and contributed 17.9 per cent to national GDP. He attributed this to the growth in the telecoms sub-sector.

“This trend demonstrates how much our industry is supporting the achievement of Government’s drive to diversify Nigeria’s economy and to ensure inclusive growth across all other sectors,” he said.

According to the ECSM, in practical terms, it is difficult to imagine how Nigeria and indeed the global economy could have fared without the internet during the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

He insisted that the fact that the conference was holding in hybrid format was just an indication of the benefits that connectivity, which the Commission is driving, brings.

On local content, Adewolu stated that all the major policy instruments emphasised the need for Nigerians to take bigger roles in the ownership and management of major spheres in the sector.

He also added that Mr. President recently launched the National Policy for the Promotion of Indigenous Content in the Nigerian Telecommunications Sector, which articulated very clear policy objectives and strategies for increasing local participation.

“It would interest you that the NCC has established a National Office for the Development of Indigenous Content in the Telecommunications Sector (NODITS) to drive the attainment of Policy objectives,” he said.

Adewolu contended that, taken together, the instruments enable NCC to aggressively drive infrastructure development, ensuring that available, accessible and affordable access to broadband infrastructure and services for all Nigerians are safeguarded.

He expressed hope that, by the end of the NNBP’s lifecycle, the country will achieve the target of reaching an effective coverage of, at least, 90 per cent of the population at a price not more than N390 per 1GB of data.

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KSACA sensitises Kannywood on combating HIV/AIDS through film

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Members of Kannywood

Nasiru Yusuf

Kano State Agency for the Control of AIDS (SACA), has organised a one-day sensitization seminar on Sunday, to empower Kannywood stakeholders on portraying issues on HIV/AIDS in film production.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Director General of the Agency, Sabitu Shu’aibu Shanono, tasked film makers on research before embarking on health related films.

He explained that Kannywood film makers have a key role to play in advocacy, as they have a large audience in the community.

Shanono charged them to contribute their portion to see the end of the disease, thus the need to make proper presentation of the disease.

According to him, “Gone are the days when People Living with the disease die easily as still presented in our Kannywood movies.”

He advised them to seek clarification on vital issues from the agency before embarking on films related to HIV/AIDS.

The DG however, stressed the readiness of the agency on building a cordial relationship with the industry, and providing vital information to film producers.

Also speaking, the Executive Seretary, Kano Censorship Board, smail Na’abba Afakallahu, commended the agency for the sensitisation.

He highlighted the role of film makers in sensitization on key issues especially health.

Afakallah called for collaboration between the industry and the agency, to send the right information to the populace.

In his remarks, the President, Motion Pictures Assocition of Nigeria (MOPPAN), Kabiru Maikaba, seeks for continuous support from such agencies.

He emphasised the need of enlightening Kannywood industry with the right information to feed their audience.

Maikaba pledged the support of his association, in contributing to end the disease, as they did in other areas.

A famous Hausa writer and the first female film producer, Hajiya Balaraba Ramat while speaking, recalled some controversies sorrounding marrying people living with HIV/AIDS.

“But today, we have seen a change in that trend because people with the virus have been successfully married and even have children,” she said.

She tasked the agency on continuous sensitization as the industry was always ready for corrections and education, in an entertaining manner.

Ado Ahmad, a renown Kannywood writer, highlighted some of the contributions giving by Hausa writer in creating awareness on early years of HIV/AIDS in Kano.

He said that the Hausa literature industry and Kannywood had contributed a lot to information dissemination.

KANO FOCUS reports that the event featured presentation from Abdallah Uba Adamu and Ashru Tukur Inuwa from faculty of Communication, Bayero University, Kano.

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Emir Bayero, Ganduje hail Dangote at Kano Trade Fair 

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Nasiru Yusuf

The Dangote Industries Limited weekend buoyed its catalog of approval rating with the commendation of Kano Emir Aminu Ado Bayero.

KANO FOCUS reports that Emir Bayero, who visited the Dangote pavilion and was visibly elated by the company’s participation, had in his entourage Council members of the Kano Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (KACCIMA), as well as other traditional rulers in the state.

The Emir also commended the Kano Government, KACCIMA and other participating companies in the ongoing 42nd Kano International Trade Fair that closes on Saturday, December 11, 2021.

Emir Bayero said his accolade is timely given the challenges businesses face around the world.

According to him: “ We have visited the Trade Fair, and we are happy with development so far despite the economic situation around the world. May Allah support our effort.”

A statement from the Dangote Group said the company has slated Friday, December 10, 2021, for its Special Day.

The Emir’s visit came soon after the Kano State Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje visited the company’s pavilion and spoke glowingly of Dangote Group’s President Aliko Dangote.

The Governor who was represented by the Commissioner of Commerce and Industry Ibrahim Mukhtar said the contribution of Mr. Dangote to Kano and indeed Nigeria, in the areas of industrialization and job creation, cannot be quantified.

Speaking earlier, during a visit to the Dangote pavilion, Ugandan Envoy to Nigeria, Ambassador Nelson Ocheger, described Mr. Dangote as an ‘African jewel’ and an institution, whose indirect support to African political leaders in the areas of job creation and industrialization are impacting positively on peace and stability on the continent.

President of Kano Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture(KACCIMA), Dalhatu Abubakar, described as apt the theme for this year’s 42nd Trade Fair, which is: Consolidating the Challenges of Covid-19 pandemic to opportunities growth and development of micro, small and medium enterprises in Nigeria.

Deputy President and Chairman of Trade Fair Committee Uba Tanko Mijinyawa said the Dangote Group has been a partner all through, even as he extolled its charity works through the Aliko Dangote Foundation(ADF).

Speaking to newsmen earlier, the Director-General of the KACCIMA Mustapha M. Aliyu commended the Dangote Group for the partnership and sponsorship of the Trade Fair.

He described the relations between the duo as mutual and supportive.

“We appreciate his efforts and support to the socio-economic growth of Africa,”  the Director-General added.

A statement from the Dangote Group said companies participating under the Dangote Industries Limited are: Dangote Cement, Dangote Sugar, NASCON, and Dangote Fertiliser.

Dangote Group urged participants who seek to do business with any of the company’s subsidiaries, to avail themselves of such opportunities through Special Desks at its pavilion.

It described Kano State as one of its biggest markets in the country, adding that it has historically been a major trade route not only in Nigeria but in Africa as a whole.

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Alleged economic sabotage: DSS arrest chairman Kano Consumer Protection Council

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Gen. Idris Bello Dambazau (rtd)

Aminu Abdullahi

The Department of State Security DSS, has arrested the Chairman of Kano State Consumer Protection Council, Idiris Bello Dambazau over allegations of economic Sabotage.

KANO FOCUS reports that a source close to the operatives, said the State Security accused Dambazau of unilateral closure of seven filling stations without following due process.

The source added that all enteritis to make Dambazau open the filling stations fall on deep ears, despite the fact that he was undertaking an illegal assignment which is beyond the power of Consumer Protection Council.

“The Security view Gen. Dambazau actions as nothing but economics Sabotage and attempt to create fuel scarcity in Kano where there was none,” the source said.

The DSS source who doesn’t want his name in print, explained that section 48 of the Nigeria constitution clearly stated that, any government ministry, department or agency exercising any power or function or taking any action which may have direct impact on midstreams or downstream petroleum operations shall consult with the authority.

This according to the section is prior to issuing any regulations, guidelines, enforcement order or directives, which the source emphasized Mr Dambazau did not followed.

The DSS explained further that even after consulting with the relevant authority, the authority shall review the recommendations of the government ministry, department or agency and communicate decisions accordingly before taking further action.

Dambazau, a retired army brigadier general was appointed chairman of the council by governor Abdullahi Ganduje few months ago.

He had earlier shut down textile shops at Kantin Kwari market for shortchanging consumers.

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