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NCS tasks FG on inclusive ICT policy - ITREALMS Online

ITREALMS: The president of the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) Prof. Adesola Aderounmu, has called on the Federal Government (FG) to form...

SS-ICT4D Week 2018

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

NCS tasks FG on inclusive ICT policy - ITREALMS Online

ITREALMS:
The president of the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) Prof. Adesola Aderounmu, has called on the Federal Government (FG) to formulate a new national information and communications technologies (ICT) policy that will incorporate digital inclusion as a pivotal factor for driving socio-economic and political development, reports ITRealms.

Aderounmu made this call in his address at the ongoing 27th national conference of NCS at the International Conference Centre (ICC), University of Ibadan, Oyo State on Tuesday.

According to him, the new policy should cover ICT infrastructure, broadband internet, fiber optic communication, local content prioritasation and regulatory framework.

"It's my belief that building a digitally connected, prosperous Nigerian society requires taking advantage of the opportunities of digital inclusion, overcoming its challenges and strategizing for the future," he said.

Also, he identified some three key areas of action to help digital inclusion become a reality in Nigeria to include access, affordability and application.

He explained that access has to do with high speed internet access being available to all members of the society such that people who cannot afford digital technologies could do, so for free in public places.

"Affordability means that access to the internet and digital devices is affordable," he said.

Aderounmu equally said that application implies that digital technologies and services are usable by people with varying levels of digital skills and abilities, including people with disabilities.

"For overall substance national development, nobody should be left behind," he said.

In his opening remark to the occasion, the Oyo State governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi urged Nigerians to make the country to be digitally inclusive.

In Oyo state, he said they are leveraging technologies to deploy quality health care for the people.

He also said that in recognizing this fact, Oyo is the only state in West Africa to have The Technical University, stressing that digital inclusion must endear social inclusion to meet a country development plan.

Digital inclusion, he said should be seen as a marathon not a sprint which require Public Private Partnership (PPP) as well as the civil society organizations.

Earlier, the chairman of the conference committee of NCS, Mr Jide Awe, said the conference theme which is on "Digital Inclusion: Opportunities, Challenges and Strategies" is reflective of the desire and commitment of NCS to contribute towards the building of a prosperous digital nation that works for all.

Showdown looms with ONSA over shut of 9mobile by River State - ITREALMS Online

The Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) and Rivers State Government may be gearing up for a showdown following the violation of ONSA directive that no government agency should seal any Base Transceiver Station (BTS) site as they are designated Critical National Infrastructure, reports ITRealms.

Base Transceiver Station (BTS) denotes a base station in Global System for Mobile (GSM) communication terminology and which consists of an antenna and the radio equipment.
Rivers State through its Inland Revenue Service (RIRS) allegedly shut a regional office and hub site of 9mobile in the state since June 26, 2018.

ITRealms reports that the shutdown is in clear violation of ONSA recent directive by RIRS in sealing 9Mobile Premises where a Critical Site is also situated, which has become inaccessible with the attendant security implications.

Also, ITRealms reports that EMTS has suffered incalculable financial loss as the sales outlet which is within the premises has remained closed, preventing it from serving its esteemed customers.

Additionally, ITRealms gathered,  EMTS suffered severe reputational damage from the bold display of the sealing order on EMTS premises, creating the perception that EMTS is a tax defaulter, whereas EMTS employees have suffered untold hardship due to this wanton act, as its employees have been unable to resume at their duty posts for over two weeks.  

Reacting to this development, the umbrella body of telecom operators in the country, the Association of Licensed Telecommunication Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), also berated the sealing of 9mobile office.

According to ALTON in a letter to the chairman of RIRS sighted by ITRealms and endorsed by both its chairman, Gbenga Adebayo, and Executive Secretary, Kazeem Oladepo, “All entreaties to meet with the RIRS for a reconciliation was rebuffed; rather, the RIRS has compelled EMTS to make a payment of 30 per cent of the alleged sum amounting to N32,387,561.088 as a pre-condition to unsealing EMTS regional office.

“EMTS has been severely prejudiced by the refusal of the RIRS to give EMTS an opportunity for a Reconciliation Meeting, despite several requests for the same,” ALTON lamented.

Further, ALTON requested RIRS and the State Government to desist from any acts inimical to the normal operations of its members in the State and to unseal EMTS Premises immediately to enable it to continue its operations to offer Rivers State its usual world class services, while granting EMTS audience for a reconciliation meeting at which the matter is expected to be finally resolved.

The ALTON letter was also copied to the Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the National Security Adviser, (NSA), Minister of Finance, Minister of Trade & Industry and Secretary, Joint Task Board (JTB).

Chuks Egbune/GEE
  
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Pix: National Security Adviser, Babagana Mongonu and Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers State.

DHL, MallforAfrica partner on African made products - ITREALMS Online

World’s leading express services provider, DHL, has partnered with e-commerce giant, MallforAfrica’s new platform, Marketplace Africa, to help online retailers bring African-made products to the US and global market, reports ITRealms.


The site offers items from the continent’s most talented designers and artisans from a variety of categories including fashion, body care, handbags, jewelry and home d├ęcor.

Until today, African craftspeople have been isolated from global customers due to distance, fear of not receiving overseas payments, and complex shipping requirements.  Customers who wished to purchase products directly from African artisans faced obstacles regarding accessibility of items, authenticity and validation of the product, uncertainty of delivery, high delivery costs, and payment security. 

Marketplace Africa was created to help artisans sell on a global stage and simplify the ability to buy directly from African craftspeople and small enterprises. Powered by MallforAfrica’s award-winning patented e-commerce platform and payment system, MarketplaceAfrica.com’s global consumers can now shop directly from African businesses of all sizes and have the products shipped to their home with confidence.

DHL will manage all logistics services as their e-commerce delivery solutions are  designed with small businesses in mind and provide the speed of delivery that customers expect. With the world’s leading logistics company behind it, Marketplace Africa will provide craftspeople and customers order verification, fast delivery, and shipment labeling and packaging services. Suitable delivery costs also keep products affordable.

Hennie Heymans, CEO for DHL Express Sub Saharan Africa adds, “We are thrilled to be a part of this innovative e-commerce solution for African artisans. DHL is a facilitator of global trade and if we can improve connectivity and accessibility to global markets for local business, this will go a long way in helping small businesses grow. We’ve been in Africa since 1978, so have seen first-hand, the huge opportunities that cross-border trade offers to local businesses. This is truly an exciting time for African businesses.”

The Africa Made Product Standards (AMPS) is used to ensure that the highest quality products are being sold on the Marketplace Africa platform. It provides consumers with the assurance that products meet an international standard in quality. All products are crafted with the utmost care by an African artisan.

Nenye Dom/GEE

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FG determined to transform creative industry into creative economy - ITREALMS Online

The Federal Government (FG) has reiterated determination to transform the nation’s creative industry into creative economy, reports ITRealms.

Speaking at the 2018 Creative Nigeria Conference in Lagos, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said assured that Buhari administration remains dogged in its determination to grow the Creative Industry and turn it into a Creative Economy.

He told participants at the 2018 Creative Industry Summit, with the theme: ''Content - The Future of Nigerian Film and Television in a Digital Era'' that the summit has thus become an annual event designed to bring together international and indigenous experts, thought leaders, key players and renowned professionals from the entertainment and media industry, to examine and exchange ideas and innovations, to create sustainable solutions to challenges and harness the full potential of the Nigerian film and television industry.

The two-day summit, he noted was put together by Think Tank Media and Advertising Limited, in conjunction with the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, was borne and executed out of a desire to urgently transform the Film, Television and Music sectors into a well-structured industry.

The first edition, he said, achieved some milestones, including sending a delegation of the Nigerian Film and Music Industry, led by himself, to the Inspector-General of Police, and resulted in the establishment of police anti-piracy units in all the 36 states.

The subsequent extensive piracy raids, he said, have led to the confiscation of pirated products worth hundreds of millions of Naira.

In addition, they facilitated the granting of pioneer status for the creative industry by the Federal Government to reduce financial burdens on new investments and encourage both foreign and local investments within the industry.

Just as a meeting with the Governor of the Central bank of Nigeria (CBN) resulted in the provision of stimulus capital for the Creative Industry to be invested through long-tenured single digit debt to private investors to build 100 community cinemas, 6 music Arenas across the geopolitical zones and state-of-the-art Pre and Post production facilities across the country, among others.
Uj. N. Dominic/GEE
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Moving from financial access to health - ITREALMS Online

Over the past decade, the push for financial inclusion has united governments, companies, technology entrepreneurs, and nonprofit organizations in dozens of countries on every continent — and with remarkable success. In 2011, only 51 percent of the world’s adults had a formal bank account. By 2017, as the World Bank recently reported in its new Global Findex data, we’ve reached 69 percent — that is 1.2 billion more people who are now connected to the modern economy.

As more people in emerging markets gain access to the formal financial system — fueled by the increased penetration of the mobile phone and associated digital financial services — the pace of financial inclusion is accelerating. At this rate, we're on track to reach universal financial access by 2020, a goal set by the World Bank, which is an important success milestone.  Access to basic financial services, such as a bank account, credit, and insurance, is a crucial step in improving people's social and economic outlook. 

As we move forward, however, we must concentrate on what comes next: Shifting our focus from creating access to improving financial outcomes for the hundreds of millions who have been excluded until now; making sure that people can use financial instruments to better weather economic shocks and invest in health, education, or in a business.

Even in the developed world, where access is nearly universal, a large cohort of people are not well served by the existing financial system. Many people who have transaction accounts but whose incomes are low or irregular, rely on expensive solutions, such as payday lending, check-cashing services, or informal moneylenders, to lead their financial lives.

Globally, account inactivity remains stubbornly high. About one in five accounts around the world are sitting idle. The reality is that access alone does not truly solve people’s financial struggles and set them up for long-term success.

There is a difference between financial access and financial health. The Global Findex has provided a valuable metric and a goal for us to strive toward: Ensuring everyone has access to financial mechanisms that many of us take for granted. But using these services must be affordable, and most importantly, fit people’s financial contexts. 

Promoting financial health means designing products and services that are relevant and address the real challenges that people face. Across ages, genders, income levels, and backgrounds, consumers have very different attitudes toward technology, levels of financial literacy, and appetites for risk. What works for a single mother in India, may not work for a cocoa farmer in Brazil or a micro-entrepreneur in Nigeria.

The obstacles are real. Increasing adoption among underserved consumers demands new approaches. Companies will need to employ cutting-edge human-centered design, the latest insights in behavioral science, and culturally-specific distribution — while pioneering new business models.

While no easy feat, several entrepreneurs around the world are already showing promising results leveraging these new approaches. The rise of neobanks is a good example. The digital-only, mobile-first banking experiences give consumers more personalization and smarter tools, often at dramatically lower costs. Neobanks can overcome many of the legacy and infrastructure costs of brick-and-mortar banking. They can take advantage of digital channels for distribution and marketing, while riding on the rails of smartphone proliferation and digital payments. They also offer the opportunity to “re-skin” a traditional bank for new languages, cultural contexts, and market segments.

As companies bring these and other new models to market, their success will depend on a policy environment that fosters innovation as well as consumer protection. Success will also rest on listening to consumers to understand their unique financial needs, values, and behaviors. 

The world has made incredible progress by uniting across public and private sectors toward universal financial access — a feat we will achieve sooner than could have been imagined just a decade ago. Let’s pursue the next challenge — widespread financial health — with the same unity of purpose, consumer-centric innovation, and focus.

*Contributed by Tilman Ehrbeck, Partner at Omidyar Network


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Monday, July 16, 2018

2019 Presidency: Dankwambo says I'm running to win, fight poverty, injustices - ITREALMS Online

ITREALMS:

The Presidential aspirant on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ibrahim Hassan Dankwanbo, has declared that if elected president in 2019, he will fight  poverty and injustices in the country, reports ITRealms.

Dankwanbo, who is the incumbent Gombe State governor, expressed resolve to defeat the Presidential candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) and other parties in the February 2019 election.

The governor, a former Accountant-General of the Federation (AGF) and Ph.D holder in Accounting, said the number one priority of a leader was to ensure the happiness of citizens by removing poverty and injustices from the polity.

Dankwambo also said it was wrong for some people to be spreading rumours that he was no longer in the presidential race.

"I am running. And I will win. Extensive consultations have been done and Nigerians will soon see a wind of genuine renaissance blowing all over their land.

“I have come to the realisation that what Nigeria needs at this time is a man who can take the country on a journey to its best self, a man who can re-energise a people who have been so badly led that they have accepted a certain impotence as the reality of their lives”.

Declaring that he is the best man for the job, Dankwambo said: “Nigeria needs a man who can fire its imagination, release the people from shackles and make them blossom. I am the man. I don't want to just be President, I want to be the leader of a 180 million-strong army of achievers.

“President is just a title. What Nigeria needs is a leader, a warrior on the frontline in the fight against poverty and all kinds of injustices our people are suffering today."

The 56-year-old politician graduated from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, Kaduna State in 1985 with a degree in Accounting.

He obtained a Master of Science degree in Economics from the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka, Yaba, in 1992 and a Ph.D in Accounting from Igbinedion University, Okada, Edo State.

He worked at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) from 1988 to 1999 before he was appointed Accountant-General of Gombe State.

He later became the Accountant–General of the Federation on April 20, 2005 and held this office until he resigned to start his campaign for election as governor of Gombe State in January, 2011.

Ayo Midele/GEE

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BREAKING NEWS: 9mobile office shut over illegal revenue drive, ALTON berates Rivers State - ITREALMS Online

The Association of Licensed Telecommunication Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) has decried the illegal revenue generating drives by the officials of the Rivers State Inland Revenue Service (RIRS) which lead to the shutting of a regional office and hub site of one of its members, the 9mobile, reports ITRealms.

The shutdown, ALTON said has been shut down for the past three weeks because of illegal demand notice, since June 26, 2018.

ALTON in a letter to the chairman, Rivers State Inland Revenue Service condemning what it termed as “over zealousness in their illegal revenue generating drives in the State” as surprising.

“We understand that the sealing of EMTS Premises is to compel the collection of alleged tax liability in the subject amount, which represents its disputed outstanding tax liability arising from Pay-As-You-Earn (PAYE) of expatriates, erroneously believed by the RIRS to be subject to tax within the Rivers State,” ALTON chairman, Gbenga Adebayo said.

ALTON insisted that PAYE obligations are to states in which the employees reside, and EMTS did not have any expatriate(s) on its payroll who reside in Rivers State within the assessment period, EMTS is clearly not indebted to the Government of Rivers State for the alleged tax.

EMTS, ALTON pointed, had, at several meetings and by various correspondence explained and maintained that it is not indebted to the Government of Rivers State as alleged by the RIRS, as it has never had expatriate employees working or residing in the state, and provided relevant documents in support of its position. 

Therefore, ALTON categorically reiterated that EMTS is not indebted to the Government of Rivers State and that the sealing of EMTS’ Premises is illegal, especially as it was carried out without a court order and without adherence to the due process of law.


“The conduct of the RIRS in this regard, apart from being a clear contravention of the law, goes against the efforts of Government at improving Nigeria’s position on the global Ease of Doing Business index, to encourage foreign investment. Also by applying self-help remedies especially in a situation where the claim is erroneous, the RIRS has portrayed the State in very bad light as unfriendly and not welcoming of investors,” ALTON maintained.

Chuks Egbune/GEE

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Obama watched World Cup final in Kenya, launches Sauti Kuu project - ITREALMS Online

The former United States (US) President, Barrack Obama, on Sunday watched the World Cup final from the city of Nairobi, Kenya, just as he launched Sauti Kuu Foundation project, reports ITRealms.

Mr. Obama who arrived in Kenya on Sunday afternoon in commencement of his two-day visit to Kenya kicked off with a courtesy visit on President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House, Nairobi.

While welcoming the 44th US President in Kenya Sunday afternoon, President Kenyatta commended Mr Obama for keeping his promise to visit the country after his service as US president.

ITRealms recalls that Mr Obama had made the promise when he last visited Kenya in 2015.

President Kenyatta also congratulated the former US president for establishing the Obama Foundation which seeks to empower the youth to become the agents of change in Africa.

The two leaders agreed that the youth in Africa could become the continent’s most valuable asset if their energy and creativity are effectively harnessed.


In addition, Mr Obama would be inaugurating the Sauti Kuu Foundation’s project, a youth centre set up by his half-sister, Auma Obama.

He also visited his father’s ancestral village in Kenya’s South-western Siaya County on Monday and danced to some traditional music with his grandmother Sarah Obama, who was cladded in traditional garb, and was drawn onto the dance floor and getting down to some music by President Obama.

Banji Boye/GEE
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US seeks Nigerian delegation to 2018 Global Security Exchange - ITRealms Online

The United States Commercial Service office in Lagos is recruiting an official Nigerian delegation to attend the Global Security Exchange (GSX) 2018, at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas, United States of America, reports ITRealms.

The Global Security Exchange (GSX) 2018, formerly the ASIS Annual Seminar and Exhibits, is an International Buyer Program (IBP) scheduled to hold on September 23rd – 27th, 2018.

ITRealms gathered that GSX is the world’s largest association for security management professionals and is the globally recognized leader for Education, Networking, and Information Resources and builds on a six-decade legacy of event excellence, uniting the full spectrum of security—cyber and operational security professionals from across the private and public sectors, allied organizations and partners, and the industry’s leading solution providers—for the most comprehensive security event in the world.

Officials also informed ITRealms that at GSX, promises a diverse community of security practitioners—from entry level to CSO, to operational and cybersecurity experts, executive protection specialists, IoT security professionals, and everyone in between—ready to exchange ideas, best practices, and business cards.


Interested participants, ITRealms gathered that only individuals with valid U.S. visas will be given priority due to the challenges in getting visa interview dates.

Chuks Egbune/GEE

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N5.4trn debt: Ekeh urges FG to leverage technology against corporate debtors - ITREALMS Online

Africa’s leading technology entrepreneur, Dr. Leo-Stan Ekeh, has urged the Federal Government (FG) to leverage information and communication technologies (ICTs) in reducing the growing incidences of corporate debts and usher in an era of unprecedented boom and sanity in the Nigerian economy, reports ITRealms.

Ekeh made this call while delivering the Guest Lecture at the maiden edition of the 2018 Nigerian Online Merit Awards (NiOMA) held last weekend at Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja.

According to him, technology will resolve much of the contemporary problems facing the Nigerian state if holistically applied, noting that the country will benefit immensely if the government turns to technology in its search for lasting solutions to the challenges confronting the economy.

He pointed out that the recent revelation by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) that, about 350 Nigerians account for 80 per cent of its N5.4 trillion debt portfolio and the refusal of majority of these debtors to liquidate their indebtedness is an issue that could be easily resolved through the application of technology if there exists accurate data of how these debts arose.

“It could also be that the government at different levels, are partially responsible for some of these debts, especially if they were unable to meet their obligations to some of these corporates,” he said.

Ekeh acknowledged that the present debt profile should be a case study for upcoming entrepreneurs or part of the issues to be dissected by data analysts on why some of these businesses failed, noting that this may also reveal a lot of insider compromises on the part of the lenders so that sincere lessons could be learnt and better structure and systems put in place to avert a recurrence.

“Working in concert with the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Attorney General of the Federation and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for enforcement purposes,” he said.

In addition, Ekeh proffered that AMCON could leverage a simple technology application that makes it easy to access the bank balances of debtors across all the various banks in Nigeria.

This, he said, could be a mandatory requirement for the extension of loans and credit facilities and will foster more responsible borrowing as the lenders can easily debit the accounts of borrowers upon due date to recover sums extended.

“This will not only reduce the growing profile and negative trend of corporate debts, with its attendant detrimental effect on the economy but will also expose many Nigerians who are publicly hailed as billionaires but who are only living large off depositors’ money, while frustrating further lending to start ups,” he stated.

Disclosing the many ways he has relied on technology to ramp up efficiency in his various businesses and simplify complex processes, Ekeh revealed that by next week, he would be trying out a new Enterprise application that will simplify transaction with bankers, irrespective of the numbers.

“This application will give us control over all of our bank accounts instead of relying on bank staff to implement our instruction at their convenience.”

He also disclosed that the new warehouses widely reported as recently acquired by e-commerce giant Konga were equipped with digital cameras with data analytics and artificial intelligence capabilities which can easily detect fraud and random inconsistencies such as a change in the appearance of an individual or item captured on entry into the facilities. Most importantly, these cameras are cloud based.

Urging the government to commit more resources to technology in resolving the unemployment challenges and drive the nation towards rapid development, Ekeh cited the influence of technology in the political space which has reduced post-election litigations from 87% to about 33%, noting that this will further reduce to 11% or thereabouts with the adoption of electronic voting, if funded by the government.

“Technology does not lie; it is either you are right or wrong. With technology, you can do unimaginable things. You don’t even need to go through the four walls of a University to acquire quality education,” Ekeh enthused.

The Zinox Chairman who spoke on the theme – Leveraging the Internet Revolution to leapfrog Nigeria’s development – affirmed that Information Technology will disrupt the Nigerian economy positively by the year 2023, creating immense opportunities and new wealth for many Nigerians. Noting that this will happen irrespective of the status of leadership at the helm of affairs in the country, Ekeh urged attendees at the event to prepare for the coming disruption.

While appreciating the organizers and Publisher of News Express, Mr. Isaac Umunna, Ekeh who received the ICT Icon of the Year award at the event also seized the opportunity to recognize the media for the long years of support in spreading the ICT gospel, even as he declared his intention to stand down from participation at many of such future events in order to allow the younger generation and his son, Prince Nnamdi Ekeh, founder of Yudala to take the stage as he believes they have better global education and exposure to lead the nation to the digital promised land.

Among dignitaries in attendance at the event was former Executive Vice-Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Ernest Ndukwe who chaired the event; Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode represented by the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Kehinde Bamigbetan; Publisher of the Guardian Newspapers, Mrs. Maiden Ibru; former Vice-Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University and Chairman, Editorial Board of the Guardian, Prof. Wale Omole and Editor, Vanguard Newspapers, Mr. Eze Anaba, among others.



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NFIU Act: MIIVOC warns, danger not yet averted, lauds Buhari, NASS - ITREALMS Online

ITREALMS:

A Civil Society Organisation (CSO), the Media Initiative Against Injustice, Violence and Corruption-(MIIVOC) has warned that despite assenting to the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit Bill by President, Muhammadu Buhari, danger is yet to be averted for the country, reports ITRealms.

MIIVOC Executive Director, Dr. Walter Duru who gave the warning while addressing newsmen in Calabar, weekend however commended President Muhammadu Buhari for assenting to the Bill, even as he praised the National Assembly for passing same.

Speaking on what needs to be done urgently, Duru stressed that “assenting to the NFIU Bill is a good development, but, that is not enough. Sending the name of a fit and proper person as head of the Unit to the National Assembly for consideration requires extreme urgency. 

The National Assembly may be going on recess in the last week of July and the President needs to act fast in the interest of the country. Setting up of a befitting office, with all structures, staffing and paraphernalia must be done without delay. Having a law in place without effective implementation does not do the country any good.”

Speaking on the implications of the new law, Duru described the development as amounting to rekindling of hope for Nigeria’s escape from looming international sanctions, while strengthening the country’s Anti-money Laundering and Counter financing of terrorism regime.

According to him, “the NFIU Act establishes a legal framework for a national center that will be responsible for the receipt of information from financial institutions and designated non-financial institutions, analysis of the financial information for the purpose of turning the information into financial intelligence and dissemination of the financial intelligence to all law enforcement agencies and other competent persons. The Act ensures that the NFIU is not tied to any agency but will have adequate measures to build an independent financial intelligence system.”

Continuing, Duru called on the National Assembly to urgently pass the Proceeds of Crime, Mutual Assistance in criminal matters and Whistle Blowers/Witness Protection Bills, as well as an updated/amended version of the Money Laundering and Terrorism Prevention Acts, to brighten the country’s chances of escaping the hammer of the international community.


“Remember, Nigeria remains suspended from the Egmont Group of FIUs, meaning that the country has not been receiving external financial intelligence since July, 2017 and this will remain in force until the suspension is lifted. The above steps are the surest way out of the country’s present difficult situation,” he stressed.

Uboshe Uboshe/GEE

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APC says PDP is dead with Ekiti victory - ITREALMS Online

With the victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the just-concluded Ekiti governorship election, the party said the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is dead, reports ITRealms.

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, made this assertion on Sunday in response to the APC victory in the Ekiti election last Saturday, adding that “Nigeria people have spoken, and they have spoken loudly, about their perception of the APC-led Buhari Administration.”

Further, he claimed that the election was more than one state's gubernatorial poll.

“It was a referendum on the performance of the Buhari Administration. And Nigerians have given their verdict! It's not just a defeat for the PDP, it's a defeat for all the naysayers who have made themselves the spokespersons for Nigerians,” he declared.

The Minister further said, it is a death knell for fake news! Anyone who monitored the social media before and during the election would think it would be a landslide for the PDP. But the reality is different.

“We want to most sincerely thank the people of Ekiti State for ensuring that the election was free, fair and credible, as attested to by local and international observers, and for turning out en masse to exercise their franchise,” he said.

In 2014, he alleged that the votes of the people of Ekiti did not count as the then PDP-led Federal Government used federal might to hijack the election and concoct the result. They barred two serving Governors from travelling to Ekiti to support their fellow Governor. They wilfully shut the Akure airport and we, leaders of then opposition APC, were forced to return to Lagos by road in the night.

With the roles reversed in 2018, we did not pay the PDP back in its own coin, because of our strong belief in the rule of law. The rest is history 

Nenye Dom/GEE

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Why Ikeja Electric deployed ACRM to reduce downtime - ITREALMS Online

Leading Electricity Distribution Company, the Ikeja Electric Plc, has recently deployed Automatic Circuit Recloser Mechanisms (ACRM) around its Akute network axis, in a bid to improve the turn-around time for resolving faults on the network, reports ITRealms.

The device, which is used in overhead distribution systems maintenance to interrupt the circuit and clear faults, is considered a game changer in reducing downtime. The Automatic Reclosers have electronic control sensors and vacuum interrupters that automatically recloses to restore service if a fault is temporary.

According to the Chief Technical Coordinator of Ikeja Electric, Engr. Sunday Oyewole, any interruption on the network or line would cause the network to open a safety trigger or fail safe that cuts off supply to customers. This disruption generally requires a manual patrol of the network by a Technical Team, which may take several hours or days, as the case may be, for the fault to be detected and rectified before supply can be restored.

However, with the installation of the device, Engr. Oyewole confirmed that ‘the recloser automatically restores supply where a fault is temporary, which in practical terms means that instead of the extended timeframe that it may take for the lines to be patrolled and the system closed manually for customers to enjoy supply, the system automatically attempts to close and restore after a few minutes. It is vital and safe, especially in this season where power is often interrupted by storms and the rain when branches and other debris interfere with the network”.

He also pointed out that the newly acquired mechanisms were part of IE’s approved network technical expansion plan, though requiring significant financial investments. He commended customers who dutifully settled their financial obligations to IE, noting that without the inflow of funds, such investments towards strengthening and expanding the network would be hampered.

The Automated Recloser Mechanism will pilot in Akute network area following which it will be deployed on a graduated basis across the entire business network.

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Glamour, intellectual feast as winners emerge in @2018 NiOMA - ITREALMS Online

It was a of fun, glamour and intellectual feast as the maiden edition of the Nigerian Online Merit Award (NiOMA) held Friday night, July 13, at the Function Suite of Lagos Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, reports ITRealms.

The event, chaired by former Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Ernest Ndukwe, drew a full house to the main hall of the upscale hotel.

About a dozen outstanding players in Nigeria’s online space were honoured at the event spiced up with comedy and musical performances. They include Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State, who emerged the e-Governor of the Year, and Africa’s Serial Digital Entrepreneur, Leo Stan Ekeh, who was honoured as ICT Icon of the Year. 

Other winners included Akwa Ibom State (Best State Website) and Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), which won the MDA of the Year award. Three winners emerged in the banking category, namely, Zenith (Platinum), Fidelity (Gold) and Access (Silver). 

Similarly, there were three winners in the newspaper category – Vanguard (Platinum), The Guardian (Silver) and Daily Trust (Silver).

Anchoring the intellectual aspect of the event, Leo Stan Ekeh and Dr. Ernest Ndukwe held the audience spell-bound as they critically X-rayed topical ICT issues facing the Nigerian nation and highlighted how the online revolution could be leveraged to leapfrog the country’s development.

The night, which opened with a welcome address by NiOMA Organising Committee Chairman, Mr. Lanre Alabi, also witnessed the debut of the all-gloss NIOMA Infotech Trends, an annual magazine.

Among dignitaries that graced the event were Governor Ambode, who was represented by the State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Kehinde Bamigbetan; Publisher of The Guardian, Mrs. Maiden Ibru; former Vice Chancellor of Obafemi Awolowo University, Prof. Wale Omole, and Vanguard Editor, Mr. Eze Anaba, among others.

A brainchild of Nigeria’s leading daily online newspaper, News Express Nigeria, NiOMA is designed to celebrate outstanding individuals and corporates driving the Nigerian online revolution.

Nenye Dom/GEE

ITREALMS ... everything news digitally!

Pix: Some of the winners of the 2018 NiOMA . . . Friday night at Lagos Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Murder: Man in police net for killing sibling after mother was assaulted, stripped naked - ITREALMS Online

John Okoye, 28 and indigene of Umuchibu village in Awba-Ofemili, Awka North local government area of Anambra State, is now in police net for killing his elder brother, Osita Okoye, 32, who reportedly beat-up their mother and stripped her naked over family land squabbles, reports ITRealms.

Osita, ITRealms gathered, was a farmer and first son of the family was allegedly murdered during a confrontation by his younger brother, John, 28, in self-defense, for purportedly beating and stripping their mother naked over land dispute with a cousin, for her intervention.

Their mother, Mrs. Joy Okoye, 58, confirmed to correspondent that trouble started in her family when the de­ceased (Osita) had a disagreement with a cousin whose name could not be ascertained at the time of going to press, over farmland borderline.

“After cook­ing on that fateful night, I was in­side the house resting when Osita returned home. After his bath, I offered him food but he asked me to forget about the food because he had a more pressing issue to discuss with me. He said he had a misunderstanding with one of his cousins from my family over a land mark and that he reported the case to security agents (vigilante).

“I tried without success to let him see reasons why the issue would have been resolved within the larger family (kindred), instead of involving security men for his cousin brother. That was how he erupted and branded me unprintable names. He even asked me to leave his presence.

“He raised his voice but I tried to calm him down because it was late already, around 10pm. I went to lock the door just not to let out our discussion to neighbours but he went after me and flung the door wide open. I also explained why he should not fight with his cousin over the land. The explanation did not go down well with him.

“Before I could sit down, he slapped me and tore my dress. I ran to the back yard to get a cover for myself. It was in the process that my second child [John] came to my rescue. John tried to pacify him to no avail and questioned the rationale behind beating me. He [John] told him it was late already and that he should stop disturbing other neighbours. But instead of listening to him, he (the deceased) ran into the house and collected knife to fight his brother.

“I tried to hold him back not to fight his brother with the knife, he collected the torch which I was holding and struck it against the wall and pounced on his brother, hitting him with the object twice in quick succession. John defended himself by forcefully snatching the knife from him, which led to a fatal injury that eventually claimed his life after he had bled profusely with no vehicle available to rush him to hospital.”

The distressed mother, who condemned the deceased’s hot temper and stubbornness, said that if he had not resorted to retaliatory actions the unfortunate incident would not have happened, noting that it was difficult to separate him whenever he fought.

While appealing to the Anambra state government to intervene in the matter by asking the police to release her son, John, and allow them to settle the case amicably within the family.

“... John and Osita are my only children. So, John is now my only possession. Now that he is in police custody, no one is giving him food and there is no transport fare to go see him. What will I be living for again and none of them is married; their father died some years back”, she bewailed.

The police public relations officer for Anambra state, SP Haruna Muhammed, confirmed the incident and said that the police will arraign the suspect, John, before the court after investigation is concluded for alleged murder.

As at press time, John was still in police custody in Achalla Police divi­sion, awaiting investigation while the deceased had been buried pending other burial rites.

Speaking to ITRealms on the matter, the traditional ruler of Awba-Ofemili, HRH Ezekwesili Maduagwuna confirmed the incident but said the Police is handling the case, reiterated the report by their mother that Osita’s death resulted from self-defense by John.

He also lamented that the community health centre if functional should have bridged the bleeding and the death should have been averted. He assured that efforts are being made for the rehabilitation of the health centre for optimal function.

Ozo Nweke Ozo/GEE

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Pix: Mrs. Joy Okoye, mother of the deceased, Osita Okoye. courtesy, OrientDailyNews.com.ng