The executive vice chairman/CEO of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, has disclosed 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.
The EVC made this disclosure during the inauguration of the ECC in Owerri, Imo State, over the weekend by Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami.
The event, which was hosted by Governor Hope Uzodimma, had in attendance the chairman of the NCC’s board of commissioners, Prof. Adeolu Akande, NCC board member, Chief Uche Onwude, and director-general of the National Information Technology Development Agency, Mr. Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, among other dignitaries.
According to Danbatta, “During the total lockdown occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic, 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 by dialling ‘112’ from any of the networks. 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.”
The EVC said the ECC project, equipped with IT tools and personnel, was a one-stop shop through which members of the public could access help from any response agency, as the centre was essentially aimed at enhancing the security of life and property of the citizens.
He listed the response agencies to include the Nigeria Police, the Federal Road Safety Commission, the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, the Fire and Ambulance Services, the National Emergency Management Agency and all its affiliate state emergency management agencies, among others. He said the NCC would ensure there are ECCs in all the 36 states of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, with 19 ECCs activated so far.