Information revealed by the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, has shown that over 1,500 COVID-19-related calls were received and processed through the Commission’s Emergency Communications Centres (ECCs) in the peak of the pandemic in Nigeria.
While speaking at the commissioning of another Emergency Communications Centre in Owerri, Imo State last week, Danbatta stated that the ECCs played a remarkable role by providing a platform for members of the public to seek lifesaving information or support and reporting COVID-19 related cases.
“I am happy to report to you that over 1,500 COVID-19-related calls were received and processed by the ECCs in the peak of the pandemic,” he announced.
He noted that Nigerians were able to dial ‘112’ from any of the networks at the peak of the lockdown as the ECC project is equipped with necessary Information Technology (IT) tools and personnel.
The NCC’s Emergency Communications Centres is a one-stop-shop through which members of the public can access help from any response agency, The centres are essentially aimed at enhancing the security of lives and property of the citizens.
Some of the response agencies are the Nigeria Police (NPF), the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), the Fire and Ambulance Services, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and all its affiliate State Emergency Management Agencies, among others.
While restating the Commission’s commitment to operationalise the ECCs in all the 36 states of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, the NCC Boss said 19 ECCs have been activated so far. The beneficiary states include Katsina, Kaduna, Kano, Kwara, Ogun, Plateau, Enugu, Benue, Akwa-Ibom, Cross-River, Oyo, Edo, Ondo, Ekiti, Adamawa, Kogi, Anambra and Imo States and FCT.
“We have no doubt that, if put to maximum use and kept functional at all times, the ECC facilities will serve to complement the State Government’s efforts at enhancing the security of lives and property of citizens,” he added.
The Commissioning of the ECC was done by the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami.
The event which was hosted by the Executive Governor of the State, Sen. Hope Uzodimma, had in attendance, the Chairman, NCC Board of Commissioners, Prof. Adeolu Akande; Chief Uche Onwude, NCC Board Member; Mr. Kashifu Inuwa, Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), among other dignitaries.