May 27, 2024
We conducted a Public hearing on the Emergency Number Bill to ensure effective, uniform national emergency number 112 — Senate
– By Alison_Godswill

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We conducted a Public hearing on the Emergency Number Bill to ensure effective, uniform national emergency number 112 — Senate

By Eyo Nsima

The Senate has disclosed that it conducted a public Hearings on the Emergency Number Bill to ensure more effective, uniform, and well-coordinated national emergency number 112, being implemented by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) through its Emergency Communication Centres (ECC).

Speaking at the recent public hearing in Abuja, Senate President, Dr. Ahmed Lawan, who noted the desirability of the passing of such a bill into an Act of National Assembly, also stressed the critical role of communication, especially in handling emergency situations.

Similarly, the Chairman of the Senate Committee, Oluremi Tinubu, said the bill, when passed, will establish the Nationwide Toll-Free Number as a primary emergency number and contact point for all emergency services in Nigeria, thereby harmonizing the various emergency numbers in the country into one uniform number while, at the same time, empowering the NCC to supervise and ensure compliance.

Tinubu, who was represented by his colleague, Senator Odebiyi Akinremi, Senator Amosun said the bill seeks to make 112 the Emergency Number of Nigeria, stating that “this will enable citizens to have access to quick and timely response in respect of all forms of emergency situations such as road accidents, fire outbreaks, burglary, medical emergencies and so on’’.

Furthermore, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, commended the Senate for organizing the public hearing. The Minister said while NCC had established functional ECCs across 23 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, efforts are in top gear to ensure ECC is established in the remaining 13 states of the Federation for the processing of the emergency calls through the 112 Number.

However, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, made a number of valuable recommendations that will make the bill, which he said might be cited as the ‘National Emergency Communication Act, 2021’ when passed into law, more effective in terms of board composition, scope as well as ability to accommodate emergency services by different statutory and regulatory agencies.

 

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