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3 CSOs partner on New Media, Citizens & Governance Confab - ITREALMS Online

ITRealms : Three civil society organizations namely, Enough is Enough Nigeria, Paradigm Initiative and  BudgiT  will hold the third edi...

SS-ICT4D Week 2018

Thursday, July 19, 2018

3 CSOs partner on New Media, Citizens & Governance Confab - ITREALMS Online

Three civil society organizations namely, Enough is Enough Nigeria, Paradigm Initiative and BudgiT will hold the third edition of their New Media, Citizens, and Governance Conference in Abuja in October. The organizers made this known as registration for the conference opened, reports ITRealms.
According to ‘Yemi Adamolekun, the Executive Director of EiE Nigeria, “the conference will shed light on how new media leverages technology and platforms to connect, curate and share information in innovative ways.  As a subset of new media, ‘social media’ requires interaction and it is this element that opens areas of risk – security and privacy challenges.”  
“Social media has continued to play a crucial role in the political landscape of the world. Political office holders (elected and appointed), political office campaigners, government departments and agencies have utilized social media as a tool to lure and engage the constituents who benefit from their services,” Adamolekun added.
Chidi Odinkalu, the former Chairman of the National Human Rights Commission, will present the keynote address, while the conference is expected to welcome leading thinkers from across Africa as guest speakers.
It would be recalled that the 2nd edition of the conference was held in October 2016, 18 months after Nigeria witnessed the peaceful ouster of an incumbent president through the ballot; the first time in Nigeria’s democratic history. The conference served as a follow up to several discussions on the use of new media in elections and as a tool for holding government officials and institutions accountable. The 3rd edition of the conference will happen in Abuja, Nigeria on October 24 & 25, 2018.
Speaking on the development, Oluseun Onigbinde, the Co-founder of BudgiT said, “The conference creates an avenue to discuss rights and responsibilities of citizens and government in using new media in mutually beneficial ways. NMCG would include an array of panels on national security, social media conduct, national orientation and technical sessions, with experts and prominent voices in Africa invited to speak at the 2-day conference.”
Tope Ogundipe, the Director of Program of Paradigm Initiative called on active citizens to register to attend the conference to ensure their voices are heard. “Governance in the 21st century is a citizen-led affair. The office of the Citizen is the most important office in contemporary politics, and we must all play our part in ensuring good governance by leveraging our citizen power. The NMCG Conference is another opportunity to devise better ways of deploying citizen power for the good of our society“, she concluded.  

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New customers on Airtel get 100% bonus on data - ITREALMS Online

... Customers to also get 8x Value of Recharge
Leading mobile services provider, Airtel Nigeria is offering new customers on its network 100 per cent bonus on any data bundle purchased as well as eight times the value of any recharge, reports ITRealms.

Under the new offer, new customers get 100% bonus on every data bundle of N100 and above, and also get eight times bonus on any recharge, which will be split along the following: Main account, 100%; Voice, 250%; data, 250%; social, 100% and Family & Friends, 100%.

For example, if a new customer buys 3GB data bundle, he/she automatically gets 6GB with a validity period of one month. And when a customer refills with N100 worth of airtime, he/she gets credited with N100 in main account; N250 bonus for voice; N250 bonus worth of data; N10o for Social and N100 for Family & Friends, totaling N800.

Airtel says the new offer will empower more Nigerians, improve productivity and help more telecoms consumers stay connected with their friends, loved ones and business associates.

Commenting on the newly revamped SmartConnect package, Ag. Chief Commercial Officer, Airtel Nigeria, Dinesh Balsingh, said the company is committed to sustaining the SmartConnect’s history of creating value and offering mouth-watering opportunities for telecoms consumers.

“The SmartConnect package has a rich and interesting history of placing absolute power in the hands of telecoms consumers. With the package, we are offering choice and freedom to customers – the power to do whatever they want to do at a very affordable rate and on a reliable and robust 4G Network.

“At Airtel, we are totally committed to creating innovative products and services that will enrich the lives of our customers as well as enable them to succeed in their professional and personal endeavours,” he said.

The 100% data bonus Offer is available to new customers and valid for 90 days, beginning from the day a customer joins the Airtel Network.

Ayo Midele/GEE

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Mobil faults picketing of its office by ex-spy policemen - ITREALMS Online

The Mobil Producing Nigeria, a subsidiary of ExxonMobil, has faulted the picketing of its offices by ex-spy policemen, who provided security for the company, reports ITRealms.

The company, in a statement by its Manager, Media Communications, Oge Udeaga, said it had fully paid all its disengaged staff, including the spy policemen.

The company said the payment followed a Supreme Court judgement ordering that the entitlements should be paid.

Udeaga, who spoke in reaction to the picketing of the company’s office, said: “Following the recent judgment of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, Mobil Producing Nigeria (MPN) has provided compensation packages for the affected personnel.

“The compensation packages cover all categories of affected personnel, including those in active service, and others who had already left the services of the Company before the judgement.

“In addition, the Company is also offering HR consulting services to assist with employment opportunities with third parties.

“MPN typically retains security services through third parties who are best positioned to provide these core competencies.

“We thank these individuals for their prior service in supporting the safety and security of our operations in Nigeria.”

Uboshe Uboshe/GEE

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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Nigeria recommends Hussani for ATU top job - ITREALMS Online

The Federal Government of Nigeria has fielded Dr. Abubakar Sadiq Hussani as its candidate for the position of secretary-general of the African Telecommunications Union (ATU) in the forthcoming Plenipoteniary Conference slated for August, this year, reports ITRealms.

Nigeria, ITRealms gathered, signified interest to fill a candidate in the exalted position of the Secretary General of the Africa Telecom Union (ATU) between August 16-17, 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya.

Also, Nigeria gave this hint to the African teleocm body, saying that for the period 2019 to 2022 through a diplomatic note verbale  No. A.90/2018 dated 13th July 2018 sent by the federal government and published by the ATU on its webpage, among other documents acknowledged via a Note-by-the Secretary-General Ref 079/07/ATU/SG-2018 dated 17th August 2018, that Dr. Hussani is the candidate of choice.

Dr Abubakar Sadiq Hussani, a former assistant professor of telecom engineering, Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola,  and the current head of department of telecommunications and wireless technologies of the American University of Nigeria as well as head of programme for the 54-member British Commonwealth ITU Group (CIG). He was proposed by Nigeria as its candidate for the August contest.

The diplomatic document stated that Dr Hussaini possesses a great wealth of experience in telecommunications which are necessary attributes to hold the prestigious office on the continental level.

At the close of nominations on July 17, 2018 only four countries have signified their interest to field candidates for the contest in line with the ATU circular Ref. 06/01/ATU-CIR/2018 of 16th January 2018. The remaining three are Burundi, Congo Brazaville and Kenya who fielded Mr Constaque Hakizimana, Dr Eric Ndoumba, and Mr John Omo respectively.

Three of the four candidates are accomplished telecoms Engineers while the Kenyan Candidate Mr Omo is a Lawyer. Glancing through the CVs of candidates, if the election is to be determined in terms of technical and cognate experience of managing international organizations, Dr Hussaini of Nigeria stands a very good chance.

Chuks Egbune/GEE

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NCC, CPC investigate effects of call masking - ITREALMS Online

The Nigerian Communications Commission and the Consumer Protection Council have resolved to investigate the effects of call masking in Nigeria on the directive of the National Assembly for the consumers, reports ITREALMS.

This saw to the review of the existing Memorandum of Understanding between the two government organizations and discuss how to work together to improve complaints resolution of telecommunications consumers.

Speaking at the meeting, Professor Umar Garba Danbatta, Executive Vice Chairman, NCC, said masking of calls with another number, especially international calls is a matter that has been trending and the NCC has been directed to address it as it has security implications.

Professor Danbatta said “The office of the National Security Adviser had directed the NCC to put in place, measures that will contain this menace even before the directive from the National Assembly to the NCC and the CPC.

“We have resolved to set up a joint committee to investigate call masking and filing and conclude within a month, and I am very happy with the outcome of the meeting.
“What has happened today is a testimony to an important item on NCC’s 8-point agenda which is strategic collaborations and partnerships with other agencies of government”

Babatunde Irukera, Director General, Consumer Protection Council said the meeting provided an opportunity to discuss consumer protection with respect to the telecommunications industry.

Irukera said: “it was a very productive meeting and few key things we agreed on is that the CPC needs a good number of guidelines, directions, regulations and initiatives of the Consumer Affairs Bureau of the NCC, with respect to addressing consumer issues.

“We are looking to concluding an existing negotiation on an MOU that will define how our relationship goes going forward, and we will open a mutual investigation into quality of consumer experiences in the telecommunications industry, to address a lot of consumer issues.”

The Executive Commissioner Stakeholder Management, Sunday Dare, stated that NCC’s journey with the CPC started many years back with previous MOU’s. 
“We been trying to review the MOU for some months and we’ve come to the final part of it, and what has happened today is to make sure we create the kind of synergy that we need to go forward to protect the consumers”, he said.

Sunday Dare reiterated that the NCC under the leadership of Professor UG Danbatta prioritizes protecting, informing and educating the 154 million telecoms subscribers in Nigeria through various ways, including the interagency collaboration with other organizations like CPC that have a mandate to protect consumers across the country.

PMB @ICC: Proud to be Nigerian - ITREALMS Online

I've seen him address the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Seen him speak at AU (African Union) summits. Seen him address the European Parliament at Salzburg, France. Watched him speak to the world a number of times at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). And on Tuesday, July 17, 2018, he stood ramrod straight to address the International Criminal Court (ICC) at The Hague, Netherlands. It was a time one felt tremendously proud to be Nigerian.

I have been on the entourage of President Muhammadu Buhari to scores of countries round the world, I have seen how he is well respected by global leaders, and how that reverence rubs off on Nigeria. I tell you, despite all the challenges our country currently faces, we have a leader the world adulates. His honesty, integrity, transparency, love for his country, personal discipline, and many others, are stuff that fairy tales are made of.

At 9.35 a.m Tuesday, President Buhari was ushered into into the main hall of the ICC at The Hague. He stood ramrod straight, in a way that belies his age of 75. Before taking his seat, he bowed reverently to the 17 judges, resplendent in their blue robes and white mufflers. The judges were picked from all regions of the world, and four of them were Blacks. Out of those four, the President, Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji, is Nigerian. All hail our own dear native land!

Judge Eboe-Osuji gave the opening remarks, which dwelt on the history of ICC, its successes, and how it could do a lot better in the immediate future. Turning 20 was a landmark, he stressed, and that was why the Nigerian leader had been invited to present a Keynote Address.

President Buhari was invited to the podium. Another bow, and those brisk strides again! A man they said had died, and been secretly buried this time last year. God is awesome.

That familiar voice came, and one never felt prouder to be Nigerian. The Fulani man, whom some people have tried (and still keep trying) to demonize, demean, and de-market, was addressing the world again. He was addressing a global audience, and people who mattered on this terra firma, were all ears, catching his every word. Again, really proud to be Nigerian.

What did the keynote speaker say? He first commended Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji, saying Nigeria was proud of him. He then delved into the history of the ICC, saying it was inspired by the Nuremberg trials after World War 2, which held people accountable for crimes against humanity, war crimes, crimes of genocide, and aggression. Such court, President Buhari noted, signposts hope for justice to many, and the world surely needs it.

A strong ICC, the keynote speaker added, is a catalyst for other justice efforts, expanding the reach of accountability. And then his prescriptions, going forward:

Let the court make room for hearing serious cases of corruption by state actors that severely compromise the development efforts of countries and throw citizens into greater poverty.

Also, the court could include cases of illicit financial flows where countries are complicit and obstruct repatriation of stolen assets.

"As AU Champion of Anti-corruption, these are issues dear to my heart," President Buhari stressed.
Before concluding his address, the Nigerian President urged the ICC to avoid bias or political motivations in its dealings, and also challenged more states to accede to the Rome Statute, the 20th Anniversary of which was being marked.

He ended on a bright and cheery note. As Nigeria prepares for general elections next year, the process would be free and fair. There would be no repeat of the 2011 post-election riots and loss of lives, which led the ICC to commence preliminary investigations against Nigeria.

The applause was thunderous, as a man of integrity, Mai Gaskiya (the honest man) concluded his address. It was a day of glory for Nigeria, and all Nigerians of goodwill. Truly, a prophet often has more honour outside, than in his own country. But then, this prophet undoubtedly has honour everywhere.

*Femi.Adesina is Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

NCS tasks FG on inclusive ICT policy - ITREALMS Online

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


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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