By Emma Okonji
The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), has disclosed that the activation of its Emergency Communications Centres (ECCs) across the country will enhance public safety.
The Executive Vice Chairman of the commission, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, said in a statement yesterday that the centres, located in state capitals, would enhance the federal government’s drive to improve security of lives and property in the country.
Danbatta noted that, at a time when the country is faced with insecurity issues such as insurgency, banditry, kidnapping, armed robbery and many more life-threatening incidents, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the emergency communications centres, established by NCC across the states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have been central to saving lives.
With 19 ECC’s already established in 18 states of the Federation and the FCT, Danbatta said the centres would play a vital role during emergencies as they facilitate response from emergency response agencies such as the Nigerian Police Force, the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Fire and Ambulance Services, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and others by dialing 112 from any network.
“The ECC has transformed lives and helped many in handling emergencies today. It is no doubt having positive impacts on lives, improving security and providing jobs for Nigerian youths,” he explained.
Continuing, Danbatta said: “Since the recognition of the important role the ECC is playing in states where we have activated them, many states are asking us to come and activate their ECCs and serious work is ongoing in this regard, as we know that this important life-saving facility supports security architecture in the country”.
The ECCs were activated as a one-stop shop for receiving distress calls from the public and dispatching same to appropriate Emergency Response Agencies (ERAs) for timely response and resolution of the distressed.
In recognition of the centrality of the ECC project to national security, Danbatta has also received the ‘Nigeria’s Goodwill Ambassador for Security and Emergency Management’, while the NCC, as a corporate organization, was honoured with the ‘Corporate Social responsibility Award in Security and Emergency Management in the country at the Security and Emergency Management Award (SAEMA) 2020, where the NCC was also declared winner of ‘security and emergency management award.’
The NCC has received two international recognitions from the International Public Relations Association (IPRA) and the African Public Relations Association (APRA) in acknowledgment of the transformational role of the ECCs in providing succor to Nigerians who are in emergencies.
According to Danbatta, “the IPRA Golden World Awards (GWA) 2020 won by the Commission and the APRA Certificate of Excellence to the Commission were for its harmonized emergency number, 112 and the construction of ECCs across the country, as well as for the efforts in leveraging the emergency communication centers for national security.”