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WRC-23: Nigeria joins rest of world to sign updated radio regulations to deepen global connectivity

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Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

At the conclusion of the World Radiocommunications Conference (WRC) 2023, Nigeria joined the rest of the World to sign unto the Final Act WRC-23, which constitutes a record of the decisions taken at the conference.

KANO FOCUS reports that the Final Act comprises both the new and revised provisions of the Radio Regulations, an international treaty governing the use of the radio-frequency spectrum and satellite orbits.

 

The Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, Dr. Bosun Tijani, represented Nigeria and was joined by the Executive Vice Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Aminu Maida and the Managing Director, Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NigComSat Ltd), Mrs. Jane Egerton-Idehen.

 

The WRC-2023 is a global, inter-governmental treaty conference which is held every three to four years by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the United Nations-affiliated international organization for telecommunications.

 

At the end of each conference, countries signed unto an updated Final Act, the outcome of agreements on agendas put forward by country administrations.

 

According to a statement by the ITU, “the agreement to the updated Radio Regulations identifies new spectrum resources to support technological innovation, deepen global connectivity, increase access to and equitable use of space-based radio resources, and enhance safety at sea, in the air, and on land.”

 

Among the decisions reached, the Conference also identified spectrum for International Mobile Telecommunications (IMT), which will be crucial for expanding broadband connectivity and developing IMT mobile services, also known as 4G, 5G and, in the future, 6G.

 

The conference also identified new frequencies for non-geostationary fixed-satellite service Earth Stations in Motion (ESIMs) that would provide high-speed broadband onboard aircraft, vessels, trains, and vehicles. These satellite services are also critical following disasters where local communication infrastructure is damaged or destroyed.

 

Provisions were also included to protect ship and aircraft mobile service stations located in international airspace and waters from other stations within national territories.

 

Nigeria’s delegation at the conference comprised seasoned engineers and experts in telecommunications and satellite regulations and governance from the Ministry, NCC, National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), NigComSat Ltd, National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA), Nigeria Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), telecom operators and other practitioners from the telecommunications industry in Nigeria.

 

Meanwhile, Tijani, who led the Nigerian delegation at the WRC-23, thanked the delegation for their sacrifices which, he noted, were made for the collective benefit of the future of Nigeria.

 

He also enjoined the Nigerian delegation to commence preparation for future conferences to ensure the preservation of the country’s interest by developing capacity through investments in extensive research and inter-agency collaboration.

 

Also, during an engagement with the Nigerian delegation at the conference, Maida commended the delegation for collaborating towards Nigeria’s best interest. He emphasised the conference’s significant importance for Nigeria.

 

According to him, “the agreements reached at this year’s conference will provide valuable spectrum resources that will benefit the Commission’s stakeholders, especially ordinary Nigerians by enhancing service quality and bridging the digital gap in rural areas.

 

“Additionally, the establishment of international standards for radiocommunications and the decisions made at the conference will impact the development and implementation of new technologies.

 

“These outcomes align with Nigeria’s overall objectives and the Honorable Minister’s Strategic Plan for the Ministry particularly on expanding broadband connectivity, in harmony with the global transition to 5G and future 6G technologies, as well as improving quality of experience and providing equitable access to all Nigerians.”

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Dangote Food Intervention Excites Host Communities In Kogi

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Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

Representatives of the diverse host communities and ethnic groups at the Dangote Cement Plc, Obajana; and that of Dangote Coal Mines Limited, Ankpa, Kogi State,aq expressed their excitement over the Food Intervention Programme of the Aliko Dangote Foundation (ADF).

In an outpouring of appreciation, a Monarch, the Bajana of Obajana, Engr Idowu Isenibi, described the Food Intervention Programme of the Aliko Dangote Foundation (ADF) as timely.

Obajana is home to West African largest cement factory, the Dangote Cement Plc, Obajana.

“It is coming at the time Nigerians are in need. We are humbled by this generosity, but like Oliver Twist, we would always ask for more,” Engr Isenibi said.

The Monarch said, “We are peaceful people. We have been protecting his investment, and we will continue this path bequeathed to us by our forefathers.

“We promise not to betray or disappoint Alhaji Aliko Dangote.”

This paper can report that N15billion was earmarked for the Food Intervention Programme by the Aliko Dangote Foundation.

Representatives of the different religions and ethnic groups took turn to pledge their unwavering support for the Dangote Cement Plc.

Speaking, the chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) who was represented by his secretary, Pastor Pius Ushie, described Mr. Dangote as God sent, adding that the food intervention would positively impact the lives of many impoverished and vulnerable people in the state and Nigeria.

According to him, the Christian community in Obajana will continue to pray for the success of the Dangote Cement Plc.

The Muslim Community, represented by the Deputy Chief Imam, Mallam Saidu Adamu, said Dangote has contributed to peace, security, and economic development of Kogi State in general.
He said in Islam feeding the poor attracts great reward, calling on other wealthy Nigerians to emulate Mr. Dangote’s act of generosity.

Leader of the Yoruba community, Ismail Adetunji, said the rice donation by the ADF would not only cushion the economic situation of the poor, but it would also help in creating a sense of unity among the members of the host communities.

On his part, the leader of the Igala community, Daiko Gideon, said his community members would continue to support the company, even as he commended it for the several social intervention schemes over the years.

Speaking earlier, General Manager, Social Performance, Ademola Adeyemi, said the food initiative represents a continuation of the Foundation’s commitment to supporting the government and the Nigerian populace in alleviating economic hardship within the country.

He thanked the communities for being the Ambassadors of the Dangote Cement Plc in the state.

Representative of the Aliko Dangote Foundation, Alhaji Sanusi Abdulkadir, said the Foundation would not rest on its oars in giving back to society.

At Ankpa Local Government Area, home to the Dangote Coal Mines Limited, Mr. Husseini Christian, a community leader commended the Foundation for the food donation, saying it would further enhance the existing cordial relationship between the company and the community.

Similarly, Mallam Ismail Yakubu, representing Awo Ate said the food intervention came at the right time, and would create succor to members of the community.

On his part, Mr. Peter Adejoh, representative of the Awo Akpali Community, said his people were grateful for the support, adding that it would go a long in easing the economic realities among members of the community.

Representative of the Onupi Community, Abdullahi Saidu, and his counterpart, Abdullahi Garba Muhammad who represented the Ajobe-Ofeanyaka community of Ankpa said the support of the Aliko Dangote Foundation is huge in his community, just as he said the community members would not relent in its support for the company.

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AFRICA CEO FORUM: Dangote calls for more investments to propel Africa’s economic growth

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Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

 

President of the Pan-African Conglomerate, Dangote Industries Limited (DIL), Aliko Dangote has called for increased investments in the African continent to foster its rapid growth and development.

Speaking at the largest gathering of private sector leaders in Africa, the Africa CEO Forum in Kigali, Rwanda, Dangote emphasized that recent trends underscore Africa’s pivotal role as the future epicenter of global progress.

The business mogul cautioned against the continent’s overreliance on raw material exports, but advocating instead for strategic investments that will propel indigenous industries. He urged African nations to resist the urge to export raw materials but to nurture domestic manufacturing capabilities so as to reduce dependency on imported consumer goods.

“Looking ahead, Africa holds the key to its greatness. I’m not merely investing money but dedicating my entire being to this cause. In Africa, possibilities are boundless. It is like a scratch card; you won’t know what is inside unless you scratch it. For some of us, despite the boom of the capital market in the US, we didn’t really participate, rather we invested in Africa,” he affirmed.

Over the past seven years, Dangote said he had channelled over $25 billion into bolstering Africa’s self-sufficiency in vital sectors such as fertilizers, petrochemicals, and refined products. Notably, he said the monumental Dangote Refinery, boasting a capacity of 650,000 barrels per day, stands poised to meet the burgeoning demand across West Africa, Central Africa, and South Africa.

“We have finished our refinery; it is quite big. We believe it is what Africa needs. If you look at the entire continent, there are only two countries that don’t import petroleum products, only Algeria and Libya but the rest import. We need to change that, so we don’t just produce raw materials but finished products and create jobs. One of the things we need to know as Africans is that when we produce raw material and export them while others dump finished products on our continent, what we are doing is that we are importing poverty while exporting jobs. We must change the narrative.

“We just commissioned in February. We are producing jet fuel and diesel. By next month, we will be producing gasoline but what that will do is that it will be able to take most of the African crudes that are being produced and be able to supply refined products not only in Nigeria because our capacity is too big for Nigeria. It will be able to supply in West Africa, Central Africa and South Africa. This is the first phase, we are going to the next phase by next year,” he said.

Expressing concern over Africa’s paradoxical export of raw materials juxtaposed with an influx of imported finished goods, Dangote underscored the urgent need to reverse this trend. He lamented that exporting raw materials while importing finished goods perpetuates a cycle of job loss and poverty.

Founded in 2012, the Africa CEO Forum, is a platform through which African decision-makers connect with each other continuously, as well as with international investors and institutions operating on the continent..

It has evolved into an organisation dedicated to facilitating business in Africa through the exchange of ideas and experiences,

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Nigeria’s Omoniyi Ibietan, elected Secretary-General of APRA

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Nasiru Yusuf Ibrahim

The Head Media Relations at the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Omoniyi Ibietan, has just been elected the Secretary-General of the African Public Relations Association (APRA) at the ongoing 35th Annual Conference and Annual General Meeting (AGM) taking place in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. 

 

KANO FOCUS reports that Ibietan was elected into a three-man Executive Council. The other two members are Arik Karani (Kenya), President, and Dr. Michele Mekeme (Cameroon), Vice President.

 

Ibietan, a fellow of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) and APRA, has promised to work with other members of the Executive Council to continue the trajectory of reforms in APRA, expand the democratic space by encouraging greater participation of national public relations institutions on the continent.

 

He has also expressed his readiness and commitment to working more closely with the African Union Commission and Council of Ministers to put public relations at the heart of policy, programmes, and project implementation.

 

Ibietan, a journalist, writer, and author works at NCC where he oversees aspects of the public communication strategy of the national regulatory authority for telecommunication in Nigeria.

 

Earlier in Nigeria’s Fourth Republic, he was Special Media Advisor to the Federal Minister of Information and Communication. He has over 20 years of experience in media and communication scholarship and practice, spanning journalism, academia, policy discourse, communication strategy, regulation, and stakeholder relations.

 

Ibietan earned BA and MA in Communication Arts and Communication & Language Arts from the Universities of Uyo and Ibadan in Nigeria, respectively, graduating atop his classes. Earlier, he obtained a diploma in journalism with distinction from the Moscow-Based International Institute of Journalism.

 

He holds a Ph.D. in Communication from the North-West University in South Africa, with specialisation in political communication. He is a IP3 certified regulation specialist and holds a mini MBA in telecommunications from NEOTELIS in Paris.

 

He is also a member of the African Council for Communication Education (ACCE), an Associate Registered Practitioner of Advertising (arpa) and member of the International Institute of Communications (IIC), the world’s only policy debating platform for the converged communications industry.

 

As a scholar, he focuses on patterns of political communication through new media; media and culture studies; and theoretical & normative foundations of communication in relation to democracy and freedom. He is on the faculty of the Nigerian campus of Italy-based Rome Business School (RBS), where he teaches doctoral students PR & Advertising and Media Management & Communication Strategy. He also facilitates learning to students in the Master of Corporate Communication programme at RBS.

 

His first book, Social Media, Social Demography, and Voting Behaviour in Nigeria, was published by Premium Times Books in Washington in May 2023. He has travelled extensively in Africa, North America, Europe, and Asia.

 

At the ongoing conference, Ibietan presented the first paper at the commencement of business sessions titled: Digital Inclusion as Arbiter of Accessible Public Relations: A case of Nigerian Communications Commission.

 

Using Castells’ Theory of the Network Society and the Knowledge Gap Theory, and based on the actions of the Nigerian government through the activities of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Ibietan advanced a thesis that digital inclusion is the arbiter of digital public relations.

 

Through implementation of laws, policies, guidelines, developmental regulation, collaborative partnerships, social investments, operational efficiency and ancillary actions that are consequential and quantifiable, and using copious pictorial evidence, Ibietan discoursed a perspective that NCC’s digital inclusion programmes, projects and activities are foundational to digital economy.

 

He argued that this is because investment in and coordination of expansion of digital infrastructure, demonstrating their affordances and enhancing people’s access to such resources, constitute the building blocks and raison d’être of digital economy and inherently digital public relations.

 

APRA, the successor to the Federation of African Public Relations Association (FAPRA), instituted in Nairobi in 1975, exists to foster unity of Africans and their global allies through interactions and exchange of meaning. This year’s theme is ‘One Africa, One Voice: Bridging Africa’s Communication Divide’.

 

APRA Côte d’Ivoire 2024 is endorsed by the Government of Côte d’Ivoire, the Holding Opinion & Public (THOP), and major global PR associations, namely the International Public Relations Association (IPRA), The International Communications Consultancy Organisation (ICCO), the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management (GA), the African Union Commission (AUC), and PR national associations across the continent.

 

Additionally, the conference featured the eight edition of the Innovation Summit (IN2SUMMIT) and included the seventh edition of the SABRE Awards Africa, holding tonight. The APRA secretariat is in Nigeria, and the body maintains an observer status with the African Union.

 

 

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