" ITREALMS: April 2016

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Four-year agenda: Cybersecurity tops CTO priority for Commonwealth countries - Taylor

The secretary General of the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO) Mr. Shola Taylor has said that cybersecurity is on top of the priority list of agenda the organization has for Commonwealth countries for the next four years, reports ITRealms.

Speaking recently to over 100 government officials and industry executives who took part BT-hosted Commonwealth Cybersecurity Forum 2016 in London, Taylor said that working with member countries on making cyberspace safer and resilient is a top priority for the London-based organisation over the next four years.

Mr Taylor made it clear that while “the open, decentralised nature of cyberspace has empowered individuals, fostered innovation and driven development, it also presents dangers for its users,” hence, cyberspace could be used for criminal activities by targeting individuals through identity fraud, targeting the vulnerable through child exploitation, targeting communities through extremism and even targeting whole countries, and was quick to add that the experiences of Estonia in 2007 being one example.

“This year’s event is our opportunity to understand new forms of cyberthreats and cybercrime and learn about new and effective ways to mitigate or eradicate them, particularly through international cooperation. With this in mind, I am pleased to announce here today that our Council has just approved our 2016 - 2020 strategic plan which makes cybersecurity one of our top priorities”, Taylor said.

ITRealms reports that CTO, is already working with a number of Commonwealth countries such Botswana, Cameroon, Fiji and Uganda to help develop their national cybersecurity strategies, and the challenges and outcomes of this ongoing work were presented at the London event.

Taylor said that key issues addressed at the conference include economic growth and innovation in cyberspace; legislative frameworks; data privacy and security risks; defending and protecting critical information infrastructure, including space communication infrastructure; international cooperation, including capacity and trust building; and combating cyberterrorism among others.

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Obiano condoles Edo kingdom, Adams over Oba Erediauwa demise

The Executive Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willie Obiano has condoled the people of Edo Kingdom and Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole on the passage of the Oba of Benin, the Omo n’Oba n’Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Erediauwa, who joined his ancestors recently, reports ITRealms.

A press statement made available to ITRealms by the Senior Special Assistant on Media, Mr. James Eze, quoted Governor Obiano as describing Oba Erediauwa’s passage as a huge loss to Nigeria.

Governor Obiano who described the late monarch as “the last of the titans” further observed that while he lived, Oba Erediauwa stood out as a bridge builder whose influence spread across the country and beyond.

“Oba Erediauwa was always fully aware of his great place in history and never failed to rise to the occasion. He carried the weight of his office well and lent depth to the much desecrated traditional institution. He was oracular in his ways and commanded respect from afar. Oba Erediauwa will be sorely missed for his urbanity, scholarship and cultural rootedness,” Governor Obiano observed.

The Governor enjoined the people of Edo State to take heart because the late Oba led a life of meaning and left a huge legacy for the country; leaving a trail of excellence that would inspire generations after him.

“My thoughts and the prayers of Ndi Anambra are with the late monarch’s family and the government and people of Edo State in this moment of grief. We pray that Almighty God will grant Oba Erediauwa a peaceful repose and his survivors the fortitude to bear the loss,” he said.
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Okowa deserves 2nd term - Delta Speaker

The Speaker, Delta State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Monday Igbuya has asserted that Governor Ifeanyi Okowa  deserves second term, reports ITRealms.

Speaking at a victory reception organized in honour of Governor Okowa by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Delta Central Senatorial District held at Oghara township stadium, the speaker said the governor’s performance provided significant cause for cheer for the good people of Delta State.

“The members of the Delta State House of Assembly are very proud of you. The people of Delta Central are proud of you. The people of Sapele are very proud of you,” he said.

The Speaker spoke at length about the leadership qualities of Governor Okowa and the changes that have taken place in the state. He also spoke about the future of the state.
Igbuya commended Governor Okowa for his credible effort to justify the mandate given to him by the people as represented in many visible projects in the state.

“Governor Ifeanyi Okowa is delivering the dividends of democracy to the people. Delta remains a PDP state” he said, stressing that Deltans must support Okowa’s programmes and persuade him to continue in 2019.

“We are excited about Governor Okowa. He needs eight years to complete the task he has begun. The people of Delta Central will continue to support him,” he said.and implored politicians in the state to strive to consolidate on the gains of democracy.

Ebireri Henry Ovie

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Tasks Systems elevates Oduntan, Faola, Okpalaeke

Foremost Information and Communication Technology (ICT) solutions company, the Task Systems Limited, has elevated three of its own, namely Mrs. Olufunke Oduntan, Mr. Lekan Faola and Mr. Stanley Okpalaeke, reports ITRealms.

The new managerial appointment, ITRealms reports saw the erstwhile Executive Director, Mrs. Olufunke Oduntan elevated to the position of Managing Director, while Mr. Lekan Faola joins the company as General Manager (Solutions).

The former Managing Director, Mr. Stanley Okpalaeke is now Group Executive Director in charge of Strategy/New business at Zinox Group Headquarters.

ITRealms gathered that both appointments take effect from April 1, 2016.

A press statement made available to ITRealms, the company, a subsidiary of the Zinox Group affirms that Mrs. Oduntan’s selection is a result of years of outstanding and meritorious performance which made her an unarguably excellent choice to fill the vacant role of Managing Director.

A graduate of Business Administration from the Lagos State University, Mrs. Oduntan also holds a Master of Science (M.Sc.) Degree in Business Administration from the University of Lagos, Akoka.

Mrs. Oduntan has a wealth of experience in marketing Information Technology & Telecommunications and has also participated in several trainings within and outside the country.

A conscientious business leader with a penchant for service delivery, Mrs. Oduntan has previously worked with companies such as Virgin Technologies Limited, Siemens Nigeria and Zinox Technologies Limited, before joining the Task Team.

Formerly General Manager, IT Infrastructure Strategies at sister company, Zinox Technologies Ltd., Mr. Faola’s appointment as Chief Solutions Architect at Task Systems is a result of over 18 years of sound business development experience in Information Technology, Telecommunications and Networking.

A highly trained engineer, Mr. Faola has proven ability to enter new markets, attract new customers and grow the business in competitive environments. He also boasts a solid understanding of government, corporate, international and emerging markets with a successful track record in Business & Territory Development, Go-to-market strategy, Channel development, Strategic planning and Relationship management.

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Herdsmen rampage on Nimbo: Ugwuanyi blames security agencies, sets up judicial panel

The Enugu State governor, Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi has blamed the security agencies for their failure to avert the suspected Fulani herdsmen rampage on Ukpabi-Nimbo community in Uzouwani Local Government Area, insisting he took all the cautionary measures to forestall the attack, reports ITRealms.

This is coming as Gov. Ugwuanyi has set up a judiciary commission of inquiry to investigate the immediate and remote causes of all the violent occurrences in the State associated with suspected Fulani herdsmen and recommend appropriate measures that will be put in place to prevent future occurrence.

Ike Nnamani joins NIRA Executive Board

The President and Chief Executive Officer of Medallion Communications Limited, Engineer Ikechukwu Nnamani was Friday elected into the Executive Board of the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NIRA), reports ITRealms.

His election came as part of the agenda for the 8th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at the NIRA House, Iponri-Lagos.

ITRealms recalls that Engr. Ike Nnamani runs Medalion, which is provides interconnect exchange services in Nigeria with customers cutting across the operators of the Global System for Mobile (GSM( communications, Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA), Fixed Line, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), and Value Added Service Providers (VAS).

The Chief Executive Officer of Medallion Communications Limited, Engineer Ikechukwu Nnamani was Friday elected into the Executive Board of the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NIRA).

His election came as part of the agenda for the 8th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held at the NIRA House, Iponri-Lagos.

ITRealms recalls that Engr. Ikechukwu Nnamani is the President/Chief Executive Officer of Medallion Communications Limited, a company that strives and carved out a niche in the Nigerian telecom industry as an authority in interconnect exchange clearinghouse services.

Also, ITRealms reports that Medallion currently has 70 telecom operators in Nigeria as it customer including all the major Global System for Mobile (GSM) communication, Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA), Fixed Line, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), and Value Added Service (VAS) Providers, as well as hosting site for the Nigerian Internet Registration Association (NIRA) domain servers as well as a site for the Nigerian Internet Exchange Point. Several crucial infrastructure providers, such as Google, International Gateway Providers among other also hosted at Medallion.

With over 15 years of core telecom experience, ITRealms gathered that Engr. Nnamani is very active in promoting forward looking industry policies for the growth of the telecom industry across Africa working with both regulators as well as operators to achieve this goal.

He currently acts as an Executive of the premier telecom body in Nigeria - the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) where he is responsible for coordinating the activities of the Licensed Telecommunication Operators in Nigeria under the body.

Engr. Nnamani is also the Vice Chairman of the Association of Interconnect Clearinghouse Operators of Nigeria, the umbrella association of the Interconnect Clearinghouse service providers in Nigeria.

He has also promoted the establishment of Interconnect Clearinghouses in Africa, working recently with the Ghanaian Telecom Regulator (NCA) in the creation of the Interconnect Clearinghouse license in Ghana.

He is presently helping to ensure there is a successful implementation of the license in the country. He is also active in creating regulatory policies for seamless interconnection across West, East, and South Africa sub regions.

Engr. Nnamani has extensive international experience having worked as an optical systems engineer at Luxcore Networks Incorporated in Atlanta Georgia, United States of America (USA). Whereas at Luxcore, Ike Nnamani as he is fondly called, was part of the team that  designed and led to the manufacturing of Luxcore’s Semiconductor Waveguide Optical Regenerative Device (SWORD), the acclaimed world’s first integrated photonic wavelength converter chip, which ensures non-blocking of traffic flow in telecommunication networks.

Equally, Ike Nnamani played a key role in the design and manufacture of Luxcore's LambdaXchange, another world’s first demonstrated all-optical router, which won the best system award at the 2001 Optical Fiber Conference at Anaheim, California.

In addition, Ike Nnamani as a researcher at the Design Methodologies Laboratory, Tennessee State University, was deeply concerned in the conceptualization, and design of a now patented Expanded Accommodation Tool (EAT) used in the Joint Strike Force project by the United State Military; which was executed on behalf of Boeing Aerospace in St Louis, Missouri.

Engr. Nnamani received numerous awards from Boeing Aerospace for his contribution to the success of the project and went on to join forces in designing and successfully test-run a prototype of Trident II submarine umbilical retract mechanism used by the United States Navy’s Strategic Ballistic Missiles Defense Programme, which earned him a United States Navy plaque for outstanding work on the project.

Ike Nnamani’s work has been published in numerous international publications including the Boeing Aerospace newsletter, and the 2002 Region XI technical journal of American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) International.

Engr. Ikechukwu Nnamani holds a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering degree from Tennessee State University, Nashville Tennessee, USA as well as a Bachelor in Mechanical Engineering degree from University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

Congratulations Ike Nnamani.

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Pix shows the Executive Director, Operations, DigitalSENSE Africa Media Ltd, Mrs. Nkemdilim Nweke, congratulating Mr. Ike Nnamani on his election to NIRA Executive Board.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Nigerian telecom industry is gender sensitive - NCC boss

The Nigerian telecom industry has been described as gender sensitive due to it gives every gender equal opportunities, especially women to rise to the leadership position in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector, reports ITRealms.

This position was proclaimed by the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief a Executive Officer of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta in a keynote to the e-BusinessLife magazine organized International Girls in ICT 2016 in Lagos on Thursday.

Danbatta noted that the evidence of the industry being gender sensitive follows its provision of the enabling environment that has enabled women to rise to the topmost echelon of leadership in the ICT sector. 

"What this means is that in the future growth of this sector that currently provides about 10 per cent to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and is expected to be a major plank in the diversification agenda of the economy from oil, women would be among the major drivers," he said.

In addition, Danbatta said that the digitally inclined girls of today, will be in the leadership position of the economy of this country in the next decade, and beyond, stressing that a digitally skilled generation of women will bring about a refreshing dimension in the quest to improve and diversify the nation’s economy.

The impact and contributions that women have made in the development of the telecom industry since the revolution of 2001, he said, cannot be over emphasis.

"We believe that the future holds even more for women as the digital space continues to widen with more services and more applications that tend to cover every facet of human endeavour," he said.

Operation Kpochapu: Police, Army, Navy, NDLEA, SSS, FRSC unite against criminality in Anambra State

The service commanders in Anambra State, have vowed to continue to strengthen the unity among them in the fight against crime and criminality in the state, reports ITRealms.

These commanders include the Police, Army, Navy, NDLEA, SSS, Civil Defense and the Federal Road Safety Corps.

They maintained it is the only way to repel external aggression and maintain internal peace.

Making this known during a courtesy visit to Anambra State Governor, Chief Willie Obiano at the Governor’s lodge Amawbia, the spokesperson of the team and State Commissioner of Police, Mr Hassan Karma, applauded the Governor for the great support he has extended to all the law enforcement agencies in the state.

Karma also commended him for the fatherly role he plays in emphasizing unity amongst them through the formation of "Operation Kpochapu" a joint security task force involving all the national security agencies operating in the state and which has yielded great results.

He assured the Governor that the team spirit that has been ignited would be sustained and the fight against crime in the state would be sustained also.

Receiving an award of excellence presented to him by the service commanders, the Governor acknowledged their contributions and adjudged them the best, just as he enjoined them to be ready for the next phase of operation that will involve cracking crimes before they are committed.

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Multinational taskforce to patrol Gulf of Guinea – PMB

A multinational taskforce will soon be established to patrol the waters of the Gulf of Guinea, says President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday in Abuja, reports ITRealms.

Speaking at an audience with the French Minister of Defence, Mr. Jean-Yves Le Drian, President Buhari said that patrols by the multinational taskforce will augment and boost ongoing efforts to improve security in the Gulf, and curb crude oil theft and piracy.

President Buhari and Mr. Le Drian also discussed ongoing French support for the Federal Government's efforts to end the Boko Haram insurgency, according to Femi Adesina, the
Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity.

The President also appreciated the assistance and support of France and other G7 countries, which he said, has helped Nigeria achieve significant successes against Boko Haram.

"When we got into office in May, last year, Boko Haram was effectively controlling at least 14 local government areas. But now, it is no longer so, and they have resorted to attacking soft targets with Improvised Explosive Devices.

"We are determined to secure all of our territory effectively. We are doing our best and our troops are now operating in the Sambisa Forest," President Buhari told the French Defence Minister.

The Minister assured President Buhari that France will continue to assist Nigeria to overcome Boko Haram, saying that all terrorists must be seen as common enemies of the free world.

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Pix: PMB and French Minister of defence, Mr. Jean-Yves Le Drian and his team.

Buhari expresses concerns over inability of bail-out states to pay salaries

The President, Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday in Abuja expressed concern over inability of the states to pay salaries despite receiving bail-out from the Federal Government, reports ITRealms.
According to him, nearly two-thirds of states of the federation are still having difficulties with salary payments.
Speaking at a meeting with members of the Nigeria Governor Forum at the Presidential Villa, President Buhari said that he was very disturbed by the hardship which state government workers across the country and their families were facing due to the non-payment of salaries.
To ameliorate the hardship being faced by affected workers, the President said that the Federal Government will strive to make more funds available to the states by expediting action on refunds due to them for the maintenance of federal roads and other expenses incurred on behalf of the Federal Government.
President Buhari also said that he will establish an inter-ministerial committee to study a Fiscal Restructuring Plan for the Federation which was presented to him by the governors.
The President said that the committee will review the plan to improve the finances of state governments and make recommendations on how proposals in the plan should be dealt with by the Presidency, the Federal Executive Council and the National Assembly through legislation.
SSA to the President on Media and Publicity, Alhaji Garba Shehu in a press statement made available to ITRealms quoted President Buhari as urging the governors, to understand that while he was ready to do all within his powers to help the states overcome their current financial challenges, the Federal Government also has funding problems of its own to contend with.
"You all know the problems we have found ourselves in. You have to bear with us," he told them.
The Chairman of the Governors Forum, Governor Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State and the Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State, who chaired the committee that worked on the Fiscal Restructuring Plan, asked the Federal Government to do more to help the states financially.
The governors told the President that while they had resolved to take other measures to boost their internally-generated revenue, the implementation of the Fiscal Restructuring Plan will help them to deal with their funding problems on short, medium and long-term bases.

They said that if the plan was adopted and implemented by the Federal Government, states of the federation will become more financially empowered to fulfil their constitutional responsibilities.

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Thursday, April 28, 2016

Girls in ICT 2016: Education prepares girls for great future - Danbatta

The Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta has identified education as key of great future for girls, especially in attracting girls to the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector, reports ITRealms.

In a speech at the 2016 the e-BusinessLife magazine organized International Girls in ICT in Lagos on today, Thursday, Prof. Danbatta said that Nigerian telecom industry is not unmindful of the fact that ICT is not a standalone in the attainment of career or academic excellence.

"Its also a message to girls that preparing for a great future demands taking education very seriously to enable them attain a level where they will be able to appreciate the importance of ICT and embrace it as careers," he said.

According to him, it is instructive that ICT provides the biggest resource in the academic lives. Noting for instance, that the Internet, which is a major repository of academic resources, is increasingly becoming accessible to many Nigerians. 

"As at the last count, more than 97 Million Nigerian have access to the Internet. This figure is expected to increase exponentially if all the current plans for infrastructure expansion and broadband deployments across the country come into fruition. Cost of smartphones capable of accessing the Internet and different apps are also becoming affordable," he said.
The Commission, Danbatta said has continued to provide facilities under the Digital Access Programme (DAP) where we provide computers and access to support secondary and vocational schools. Pointed out that whilst this support is not provided for girls schools alone, the idea is to enable students, including women to embrace the digital world as early as the secondary school stage.
"We have been able to provide sponsorship for digital innovations to encourage creativity in the ICT world. Girls are always in the team of innovators at successive competitions hosted by the ITU at the annual ITU World events and the Commission has provided sponsorships to successful participants," he said.

These, the NCC boss noted, are some of the ways that the Commission has contributed to empowering girls to choose careers in the ICT industry in line with the objectives.

Coker, CFA, Obadare, 47 others honoured @Beacon of ICT Awards 2016

The Nigeria CommunicationsWeek has honoured 50 deserving nationals and organisations at this year's Beacon of Information & Communications (BoICT) awards 2016, including the Managing Director of Rack Centre, Ayotunde Coker, and Chukwuemeka Fred Agbata Jnr, reports ITRealms.

While the award for the Man of the year went to the MD, Rack Centre, Mr. Coker; ICT Software Personality of the year went to John Obaro, MD, SystemSpecs; ICT Journalist of the year went to Chukwuemeka Fred Agbata Jnr. 'CFA' presenter, Tech Trends on Channels TV., Wale Obadare and Seyi Akindeinde represented Digital Encode and received the award for Cybersecurity company of the year. At the end of the night, there were over 50 winners in different categories.

The event hosted at Eko Hotel & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, saw who-is-who in the telecom industry was chaired by chairman, Open Media Group, Dr. Ernest Ndukwe, who challenged government on the need to make the required investments and policies that will help deepen broadband penetration.

In his BoICT lecture, Mr. Coker stressed the importance of data centres to the growth of any modern economy and the need for local businesses to store sensitive data locally.Stressing that the opinion will have massive and positive effect on the GDP of the country.

Most of the awardees were elated and promised to keep working towards the growth of the ICT industry in the country.

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Pix: Mr. Lanre Ajayi, ATCON president presenting CFA with his award.

VAS regulatory framework to promote local ICT innovations - Danbatta


The Executive Vice Chairman (EVC) of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta has stressed the essence of the proposed regulatory framework for the provision of Value Added Services in Nigeria, saying that it will promote Information and Communication Technology (ICT) innovations locally, reports ITRealms.

Danbatta in his opening remarks at the commission's Consultative form on the Draft Regulatory Framework for the Provision of Value Added Services in Nigeria at the Sheraton Hotel, Lagos, Wednesday, he spoke on the the Commission's goals towards creating a level playing field for all stakeholders to ensure that they each gets equal value for their role in ICT, which will also in turn promote ICT innovation locally.

Th EVC also said that it would increase investment in youth, promote Small & Medium Enterprises (SME's), as well as providing access to optimized and affordable broadband services in the country.

He noted that it is important to develop and encourage quality local content in Nigeria by rewarding content developers who are major players in the Value Added Services (VAS) segment of the industry.
"That when finished, the regulatory framework will compliment the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 (NCA 2003) and respective licences issued by the Commission in providing guiding principles, standards and protocols for Value Added Services operating in the industry," he said.

Danbatta equally said that the forum is part of the Commission's rule-making process and its guiding principle of carrying out representative and wide consultations in the development of regulatory instruments as stipulated by the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 (NCA 2003).

ALTON, NCC implements 'Don't disturb' list to check unsolicited SMS,fraud

The Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) in line with concerns of the telecom public through the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has commenced the implementation of  'Do not disturb' list to afford subscribers to opt out of unsolicited Short Messaging Service (SMS) and check fraud, ITRealms reports.

Confirming this, ALTON chairman, Engr. Gbenga Adebayo, said Wednesday at a one day stakeholders forum in Lagos in response to the draft Value Added Services a Framework by NCC, to find a lasting solution to addressing the menace of unsolicited text messages that flood customers’ phones.

"We have implemented “Do not Disturb” Lists" he declared, explaining that it would enable customers who do not wish to receive marketing messages to opt-in to, free of charge, stressing that they are working with the NCC on the best means of publicizing this.

ALTON he also said is working with the Wireless Application Service Providers Association of Nigerian (WASPAN) and have developed a comprehensive Code of Conduct to govern VAS practices. 

"This 24-page document addresses several diverse issues," which he said, including unsolicited SMS, prevent “service users” from using short codes to perpetuate fraud, anti-competitive activities, among others.

Adebayo further said, a draft of this document has been submitted to NCC and is now being finalized with WASPAN. 

"Once finalized, it would be given the widest possible publicity so that customers can know their rights and seek redress as may be necessary" he assured.

ALTON, ITRealms recalls, is the umbrella association for all providers of telecom service in Nigeria, comprising of all providers of Mobile telephone services, fixed network services, backbone services, Infrastructure providers and all support service companies for the telecom operators.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Why private sector needs to support creative industry – Lai Mohammed

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has given reasons why the support of the private sector is utmost needed for the ongoing efforts to re-position the creative industries in the country, reports ITRealms.

In a keynote address to the Creative Industries Conference and Expo, organised by the British Council in Abuja on Tuesday, the Minister reiterated the importance of supporting this industry for the sake of contributing more to national development.

''We are calling on the private sector to partner with us to sponsor, in a more holistic manner, our arts and festivals,'' he said, stressing that his office is to name some creative centres after corporate sponsors in these areas in order to make it a win-win situation.

Mohammed also said the Ministry of Information and Culture is partnering with the British Council and the Tony Elumelu Foundation to map out the nation's creative industries and build the capacity of practitioners.

''We will work with our partners to train festival managers in order to bring them at par with their counterparts elsewhere in the world, including those who organise the popular Brazil Carnivals in Rio and Copacabana as well as the Edinburgh festivals,'' he said.

He commended the British Council for organising the conference, and noted that the timing could not have been better, ''considering that it is coming just a day before we kick-start our own National Summit on Culture and Tourism''.

''This conference will not only enrich the summit, but will play a major role in our ongoing efforts to leverage on the Culture and Tourism Sectors to further the government's economic diversification agenda,'' he said, pointing out that the Arts, Culture and Tourism sectors are among those whose potentials are being harnessed ''as we move to diversify our economy away from oil.”

'The Creative Industries alone, he said, offers incredible opportunities in terms of job creation, stability in the polity, moving millions of people out of poverty, addressing the issue of crime, stopping rural-urban migration and creating a local economy.

Uj. N. Dominic/GEE
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Pix: Lai Mohammed

Phone etiquette to note

A telephony conversation is all about communicating in the right way, as it is different from a face-to-face conversation, which makes understanding the other person pretty easy for you. 
Observing telephone manners is important especially if it is an official call that you are making or receiving. Being able to speak on the phone with good manners and poise is just as important as communicating face-to-face.
1.         Always introduce yourself - When you call someone, a friend, family or stranger, speak clearly in a modulated voice and introduce yourself. Smile before taking the call, this allows you to be more amicable.
2.         Be well-mannered - It would be a better world if we all treated each other the way we wish to be treated. When you are on the telephone with someone, you should treat the caller with the same dignity and respect we expect from them.
3.         Proper Tone of Voice - Tone of voice is the non-verbal component of your telephone personality. Do not sound anxious, aggressive or pushy. While in public, yelling, rude language and profanity may be inappropriate and offensive to those within earshot.
4.         Beware of your language - Your use of language can make or break a call. There are certain words and phrases that can quickly turn off a caller. Things like "I don’t know," “We can’t do that". On the other hand, there are words and phrases that are music to a caller's ears such as "Let me see what I can do for you" or “I'm not sure, but let me check and see." Show a caller that you care about them and at least, you are trying to help.
5.         Develop listening skills - Many people have a tendency to talk incessantly on the phone, while not giving the other person a chance to speak. Do realize that it is important to listen to the other side as well.
6.         Do not hold inappropriate conversations in public - Use appropriate volume when speaking on the phone, everyone around you does not need to hear your conversation, do not put your phone on speaker your conversations should be discrete.
7.         Do not use loud ring tones - Avoid excessively loud or annoying ring-tones, they can be very disruptive or aggravating to those around you.
8.         Call at appropriate time - Consider your call timing whether it is your friend, acquaintance, business partner or workplace colleague, you should consider the time of calling a person. Unless it’s very urgent, do not disturb a person when he/she is busy or during the peak working hours.
8.         Do not put a caller on hold for a long time - If you have put a caller on hold for a long time, be sure to check back within few minutes, as to whether he/she would like to continue to be on hold or not.
9.         Give your full attention - Do not make calls while driving, shopping, banking or doing something else, it puts your life and others in danger and causes distraction.
10.       Know where to use your phone - If your cell phone rings while you are talking or having a meal with someone, take the call only if it is important and excuse yourself for the duration of the call.

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Pix: Uj. N. Dominic/GEE

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Breaking News: Enugu herdsmen mayhem: Presidency denied Ugwuanyi access to Buhari for 3hrs, calls put on-hold

Revelations have emerged as to why the Executive Governor of Enugu State, Chief Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi busted into tears on seeing the mayhem allegedly committed by Fulani terrorists cum herdsmen on Ukpabi-Nimbo community in Uzouwani Local Government Area (LGA) of the state, reports ITRealms.

According to reports that filtered into ITRealms newsroom late Tuesday, the governor was denied access to the Presidency for close to four hours on two attempts.

Sources close to the Enugu State government confirmed to ITRealms that Gov. Ugwuanyi had on getting information on intending attack summoned security meeting which included all the parties as well as the Hausa-Fulani Community in Enugu State, security agents and community leaders and effort to alert the President Muhammadu Buhari proved abortive with his calls initially placed on hold for over 75 minutes by an aide, that is an hour 15 minutes.

Also, it was revealed that second effort to reach Mr. President was when after contacting the Police authorities and they failed to send a contingent to Uzouwani LGA, the Governor reportedly reached out to the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 82 Division of the Nigerian Army in Enugu, who referred him to the Presidency for directives, and his call was equally alleged to have been put on-hold for about 2 hours.

Surprisingly, our source who claimed his relative was among those who witnessed the calls, said, immediately it was evident that the attack has taken place, both the Police and Army (82) division deployed forces to the Nimbo community for fear of reprisal, thus leaving much to be desired.

As said by our source, the first call made by Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to the president, was put on hold for over an hour 15 minutes, in the presence of some 13 men and 4 women, but a presidential aide told the governor that the president will revert.

While reverting after four hours, it was gathered that the presidential aide told Gov. Ugwuanyi that the president will do something about his complains.

“My relative was among the people who witness this call,” our source insisted, stressing that while waiting to speak to the president for the second time, the news came in that the attack he was planning to avert has actually taken place.

Our source further expressed concern that the same way Lagos and Agatu, Benue state attacks respectively was executed and retaliation prevented was the same way Nimbo attack was prevented too.

He further urged Gov. Ugwuanyi and all the good people of Enugu State to demand probe on this massacre, while working on plan B, wondering why the State Police Commissioner and GOC needed presidential orders to protect the innocent citizens? And why they sent their men to Uzouwani after the attack to prevent reprisal?

In addition, our source said there is need for Nigeria and Enugu indigenes and the Igbos at large to know “why a sitting Governor cannot use the support of police and military to protect his people?”

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Etisalat boosts primary education in North East with kits

In efforts towards achieving the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on education in the country, Etisalat Nigeria, has partnered with a non-governmental organisation, Abuja Global Shapers Community and the Governments of North-Eastern states of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa to provide free educational support to primary school pupils in the states, reports ITRealms.

The initiative tagged, “Community School Support Programme (CSSP)” features donation of Back-to-School kits, including school uniforms and bags, to pupils drawn from 10 primary schools in the states.

This, ITRealms gathered, is part of the company’s multi-faceted CSR programme that is committed to giving value to communities through various intervention programmes covering education, health, among others.

The benefiting schools are Yerwa Practising Primary School, Abbaganaram Primary School and Bulumkutu Primary School all in Borno State; Katuzu Community School, Gashua, Central Primary School, Potiskum and Lawan Kawuri Primary School, Geidam, all in Yobe State; and, Wuro Hausa Primary School, Yola Town, Community School, Demsa and Tudun Wada Primary School, Mayo Belwa in Adamawa State.

Speaking at the formal presentation of the kits to these schools in Maiduguri, Borno state on Monday, the Vice President, Regulatory and Corporate Affairs, Etisalat Nigeria, Ibrahim Dikko, said the partnership is intended to enhance ongoing efforts aimed at making basic education available and sustainable.

Mr. Dikko, who was represented by the company’s Head, Government and Community Relations, Mohammed Suleh-Yusuf, reiterated the commitment of the telecommunications giant to sustainable development initiatives that impact on the wellbeing of the populace across various sectors.

“Etisalat Nigeria is committed to delivering sustainable community support programmes that will complement public services and extend benefits to the grassroots across Nigeria. We are proud to be able to contribute positively to achieving the objective of improving our partner states especially in the area of Education. We will continue to collaborate to move the states and indeed the nation forward,” he assured.

Also speaking, the Borno State Commissioner for Education, Hon. Musa Inuwa Kobo represented by the Permanent Secretary, Borno State Ministry of Education, commended Etisalat for pursuing causes that serve the interest of the societies in which it operates. He identified investment in education as one fundamental way to secure a progressive future while advancing the cause of the larger society.

“Today, if we are not mindful of the education sector, tomorrow, we will have incompetent lawyers and as a result, people will lose their liberty, we are going to have incompetent doctors, and as a result, people will lose their lives, we are going to have incompetent engineers  and as result, bridges will collapse, roads will fail. If we are to be called a civilized society, we should take time and make sacrifices for the future. This is the lesson Etisalat is teaching us. Etisalat as a corporate organisation is mindful of its social responsibility,” he said.

Uj. N. Dominic/GEE
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Pix: (L-R) Head, Government and Community Relations, Etisalat Nigeria, Mohammed Suley-Yusuf; Permanent Secretary, Borno State Ministry of Education and Member, Borno State Education Board, Engr. Mohammed Gamboni presenting to a pupil of Yerwa Practising Primary School, Borno, one of the Back-to-School kits donated by Etisalat Nigeria in Maiduguri on Monday.

Kazaure reiterates Galaxy Backbone drive for digital Nigeria

The Managing Director and Chief executive officer (CEO) of Galaxy Backbone Limited, Mr. Yusuf Kazaure, has reiterated the commitment of the infrastructure company to drive the Nigeria’s digital development, reports ITRealms.

Speaking at the 14th Innovation Africa Digital (IAD) Summit 2016 which held in Abuja recently, Kazaure said that the determination of the company under his watch is to attain emerging market leader on the African continent.

“We are fully conscious of the need to be in the vanguard of Nigeria’s digital growth especially within the public sector. Over the years, we have made significant investments in human and technological resources based on our vision to be the leading enabler of digital inclusion in Africa” he said.

Kazaure told the audience at the summit that harnessing Africa’s digital growth was a key challenge facing African leaders, both in government and business, hence, there was the need for high-level dialogue that would draw attention to the nature of decisions and actions necessary for the digital transformation of the continent for a better future.

He, therefore, challenged policy makers, regulators, service providers, solutions providers and ICT experts on the continent to leverage the huge investments already made in ICTs to innovate and induce organic growth in Africa.

Kazaure pointed out that Galaxy Backbone Ltd, established in 2006 currently has over 350 Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) connected to its 1-GOV.Net in over 4,000 office locations nationwide, thus making it the largest single network ever-developed in the public sector in Africa.

“It is even more noteworthy that Galaxy Backbone’s 1-GOV.NETinitiative – a common network infrastructure platform - was benchmarked on global best practices and the company emerged in the 2013 United Nations Public Service Award as 1st Place Winner for “Promoting Whole-of-Government Approaches in the Information Age” for its 1-GOV.NET initiative," he said.

Further, he confirmed that the UNPSA award was a validation of Galaxy’s vision to be the leading enabler of digital inclusion in Nigeria and on the continent.

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