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NCC Backs Bayelsa’s Drive to Boost Digital Infrastructure

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Nasiru Yusuf

In keeping with its renowned tradition and believe in strategic partnership and collaboration, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has expressed its readiness to collaborate with the Bayelsa State Government in accelerating telecommunications infrastructure deployment, digital literacy and skills in the State.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (EVC/CEO) of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, reiterated this commitment during a courtesy visit by a delegation from Bayelsa State to the Management of NCC in Abuja recently.

Stating the purpose of the visit to the Commission, Bayelsa State’s Commissioner for Communications, Science and Technology, Dr. Promise Ekio Ekio, who led the delegation, said Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector is one of the critical areas that the state government has identified for priority to accelerate the growth of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in the State in order to bolster employment for the youths of the state and to nudge their interest in digital culture.

Ekio said that while the plan to leverage ICT for socio-economic development of Bayelsa State has been uppermost in the agenda of the state government, several engagements made by the State government with industry stakeholders are yet to receive concrete action, apparent due to lack of robust telecommunications services in the State.

“Therefore, it is our fervent hope that this meeting will be the beginning of a partnership that will blossom in the areas of digital training and rapid ICT infrastructural development, for the benefit of the people of Bayelsa State and other Nigerians living in the State. We want to assure the Commission of our preparedness to work closely with it to fulfill its mandate in the State as well as actualise the vision of Bayelsa State government to leverage ICT for accelerating development,” Ekio said.

Also, the Bayelsa State Commissioner Communication, Science and Technology, commended the NCC for the good works it is doing in fast-tracking implementation of the digital economy initiatives of the Federal Government by being upbeat in consolidating the gains of the telecommunications sector. The Commissioner promise that Bayelsa State will also provide necessary incentives to accelerate ICT deployment in the State.

Responding to his guests, Danbatta, who was represented during the meeting by NCC’s Director, Digital Economy, Dr. Augustine Nwaulune, commended Bayelsa State Government for seeking collaboration with NCC to stimulate economic growth through telecommunication services and assured that NCC is a ready and willing partner of Bayelsa State on telecoms and ICT.

While the Commission is willing to partner with state governments and other relevant institutions to ensure universal access and universal services, Danbatta said efforts shall be made collaboratively to ensure that relevant infrastructure needed to delivering ubiquitous telecom services to achieve Bayelsa’s socio-economic goal are prioritized.

Danbatta emphasized the Commission’s recognition of the importance of infrastructure expansion in achieving Federal Government’s vision on digital economy. Citing the Nigerian National Broadband Plan (NNBP) 2020-2025 as one of the initiatives of the Federal Government instituted to bolster infrastructure expansion, Danbatta stated that the implementation of the Plan is essentially driven by NCC. He promised that NCC will ensure that infrastructure gaps in the telecommunications sector are bridged to accomplish Government’s vision in the context of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy 2020-30.

Explicating further, Danbatta stated that, to accelerate broadband infrastructure deployment in the South-South geo-political zone where Bayelsa State is situated, the NCC had licensed Messrs Raeaana Limited, as one of the seven licensed Infrastructure Companies (InfraCos), authorised to cascade fibre to deepen the penetration of broadband services in all nooks and crannies of the country. “The InfraCo licensees have been given timelines to work in their respective zones of deployment to cascade fibre infrastructure to the rural communities, covering the 774 Local Government Areas (LGAs) to enhance robust telecom service provisioning in the country”, the EVC stated.

Meanwhile, Danbatta has urged the Bayelsa State Government to revisit the Right of Way (RoW) charges imposed by the State and other issues capable of encumbering faster deployment of infrastructure in the State. “This will boost digital infrastructure rollout in towns and communities in Bayelsa State and environs for effective economic diversification. The digital economy rides on broadband and ICT infrastructure and one of the factors inhibiting access to telecommunication infrastructure is RoW administration by States and other state actors” he said.

Danbatta also emphasised the importance of comprehensive training for the youth in Bayelsa State and equipping them with ICT tools to enable them to thrive in a digital economy. “On this, the NCC will collaborate with Bayelsa to provide training for the youth as long as the State Government provide necessary tools required to achieve objective outcomes of such capacity building initiatives”, he said.

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Gov Yusuf vows to fish out perpetrators of thuggery in Kano

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Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

Kano State governor, Alhaji Abba Kabir Yusuf, has vowed to investigate and fish out perpetrators of political violence, threatening that the government would not spare anybody, irrespective of their political parties.

KANO FOCUS reports that Gov Yusuf made this known on Friday when he received the Emir of Kano, Aminu Ado Bayero, who paid the traditional homage at the government house as part of the Hawan Nasarawa activities.

He then promised to work hand in hand with the emirate while noting their contribution and cooperation with the government.

Commissions of inquiry not targeted at opposition

Governor Yusuf, has said that the Commission of Inquiry created by his government to investigate political fights that led to killings in 2023 and to investigate the alleged diversion of public funds was not meant to witch-hunt anyone, but to re-write the wrong

He said the commissions were set up to ensure transparency and accountability in government and to tackle the menace of political violence in the state.

According to him, the move was to put an end to political violence, which leads to the loss of lives and destruction of properties and to place the state on the path of economic and political development

Earlier, the Emir commended the government for the distribution of palliatives, which he said to a large extent cushioned the hardship among the residents while calling for adjustment where necessary.

Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero,

Emir Bayero condemned in totality the trend of horse riding, thuggery, phone snatching, and other internal crimes that, according to him, led to the loss of lives and properties.

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Dangote donates bags of rice to 48 charity groups in Abuja

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Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

Continuing its National Food Intervention Programme, the Aliko Dangote Foundation has facilitated the distribution of thousands of bags of rice to beneficiaries and vulnerable Nigerians in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, with no fewer than 48 charity organizations and orphanages involved in the process.

According to the company’s spokesperson, Anthony Chiejina, the initiative represents a continuation of the Foundation’s commitment to supporting the government and the Nigerian populace in alleviating economic hardship within the country.

Mr. Chiejina noted that following the National Flag-off events in Kano and Lagos, the Foundation initiated the distribution of one million bags of rice throughout all the local government areas in Nigeria last month.

The coordination of the distribution exercise in Abuja is being undertaken by the 1Ummah Foundation, led by Mrs. Azeeza Hassan-Jibril.

Speaking to newsmen, Mrs Jibril said some of the groups that are supporting the ADF in the distribution exercise are: Hope for survival Children’s Home Gishiri, Child to Child Charity Foundation, Gajiya Charity Foundation, Mission for Education, Social and Health (MESH), JADAFIA Group, Network of Women with Disabilities (NWD), Dagam Pilame Community Association, Eeqra Foundation/Orphanage, Leprosarium-Yangoji, Support our troops (SOT) Foundation for widows, Karmajiji Disabled Colony, Bimbola Nutrition and Health Foundation, NASFAT Foundation, and JIBWIS Group among others.

Mrs. Jibril said the donation will greatly and positively impact on the beneficiaries in Abuja.

Reacting, Lead Program Officer of the Mission for Education, Social and Health (MESH), Mrs Khadija Oladipupo, said the rice donation has helped “nourish and uplift those in need within our communities.”

“Together, we’re making a meaningful difference in the lives of our population, especially those in need,” she said.

In her response, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Gajiya Charity Foundation, Hafsat Umar Gimba, expressed gratitude, describing the intervention as a generous assistance.

She said: “Receiving the items you sent has brought immense relief and comfort to the less privileged in the society during these hard times. Your kindness and compassion have touched their hearts profoundly. The rice provided have eased their burdens and provided them with the necessities they desperately needed.

“Knowing that there are individuals and organizations like ADF and 1Ummah who care deeply about the well-being of others fills me with hope and renewed faith in humanity. May you continue to be blessed abundantly for your noble work, and may your kindness inspire others to lend a helping hand to those in need.”

In the same vein, Administrative Secretary, Movement for Islamic Culture and Awareness (MICA), Adeniyi Akeem Akanbi, said: “we sincerely appreciate your support for the rice given us to share among our members and people of Lugbe environs. We say Jazakah lahu kayran to the Dangote foundation and pray Allah reward the organization abundantly.”

According to the President of Network of Women with Disabilities (NWD), Lois Auta, “Your commitment to supporting marginalized communities, particularly women with disabilities, exemplifies your dedication to social responsibility and compassion. Through your donation, you have not only alleviated the immediate needs of those in our network but also demonstrated solidarity and empathy towards our cause.”

Meanwhile, the President of the JADAFIA Group Mrs. Rakiya S Bamalli said: “I want to express our heartfelt appreciation for the generous donations provided by the Aliko Dangote Foundation during the holy month of Ramadan.

“The contributions have enabled us to expand our Ramadan outreach programs, including the distribution of food packages, iftar meals and essential supplies to families and communities facing hardship. This has made a significant difference in our efforts to provide relief to those in need within our community.”

Responding, representative of the Bimbola Nutrition and Health Foundation Mr. Femi Akosile said: “We take this moment to appreciate Aliko Dangote Foundation for the provision of 10kg bags of rice for distribution to the less privileged and vulnerable groups.

“Your contribution has made a significant impact on our efforts to support those in need in our community. The rice has been distributed to families and individuals who are experiencing food insecurity. We want to sincerely say that your partnership and commitment to making a positive difference in our community are truly inspiring, and we are honored to have had the opportunity to work with you.”

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Kano governor reappoints Ogan Boye Special Adviser Youth

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Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

 

The Governor of Kano State, Abba Yusuf, has reappointed Yusuf Shu’aibu Imam popularly known as Ogan Boye, whom he sacked amidst tension associated to judgement of governorship electoral petition tribunal.

KANO FOCUS reports that the governor’s spokesperson, Sanusi Bature, on Tuesday, announced that Ogan Boye was reappointed to his previous office.

According to the spokesperson, the governor also approved the appointments of additional special advisers and other heads of government agencies.

Former chairman of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) Bayero University, Kano branch Pofessor Ibrahim Magaji Barde was appointed Special Adviser on Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), Dr Abdulhamid Danladi was appointed Special Adviser on Diaspora and Bello Muhammad Kiru was appointed Special Adviser on Water Resources.

Other appointees include Nura Jafar Shanono, who moved from Special Adviser Water Resources to Managing Director of Water Resources Engineering and Construction Agency (WRECA).

Nasir Mansur Muhammad was appointed Director General, Small and Medium Enterprises(SMEs) while Aminu Hamidu Bako Kofar Na’isa is to serve as Deputy Managing Director of the Kano Agricultural and Rural Development Authority (KNARDA).

Mukhtar Yusuf was appointed the Deputy Managing Director of the Water Resources Engineering and Construction Agency (WRECA).

Baba Abubakar Umar was moved from Special Adviser to the governor to Executive Secretary Private and voluntary Institutions Management Board.

 

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