Chief of Staff to the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Akparawa Ephraim Inyangeyen has predicted that the ongoing National Identification Number (NIN) capturing exercise by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) could be used in determining state allocations.
The former Commissioner for Works said this when he paid a visit to journalists in Akwa Ibom State, during their January 2021 Congress which held at the Press Centre in Uyo.
Ephraim Inyangeyen who told members of the press that the database captured by NCC was being submitted to the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), noted that the implications for this was the usage of this data for elections and state allocation subsequently.
Explaining further, Akparawa Inyangeyen pressed that since the NIN is linked to one’s Bank Verification Number (BVN), a disconnection of communication lines could hinder access to money, hinder communication and stall the renewal/acquisition of driver’s license as well as necessary travel passports.
He therefore called for the creation of massive adherence awareness from the newsmen to members of the public on the need to get their telephone lines registered as instructed by the NCC before the February 19 deadline, adding that not up to 800 Akwa Ibomites have so far been captured.
“This does not represent the total number of Akwa Ibomites. Let’s advocate for the registration of NIN. Let’s not cause the reduction of our allocation”, he pleaded.
Speaking on the drastic impact of the second wave of COVID-19, the COS harped on proper usage of facemasks, stressing that it must be worn as a matter of life and death.
“COVID-19 is real and we must help ourselves and others by taking responsibility”, he charged.
While commending the journalists for their good works overtime, Ephraim Inyangeyen enjoined them to restrain from sensationalism and falsehood, and rather engage in truthful reportage and constructive criticism.
Himself the grandpatron of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Zone F, he advised the press men not to severe the relationship between the government and themselves with biased reports.
At the congress, the State Information Commissioner, Comrade Ini Ememobong also spoke of the damages already done by the second wave of COVID-19 and the need to take adequate caution.
He called for proper sensitization of the public on the dangerous reality of the virus and tasked the newsmen on the need to be wary as well.
“We are the ones sending the information; we should not be ones breaking it. The better part of the virus is in the prevention”, he maintained.
The State Informant also warned against the publication of malicious stories about the government, adding that such was not in the best interest of their relationship with the government.
Responding, Chairman, Akwa Ibom State Council of the NUJ, Comrade Amos Etuk appreciated the guests for the concern shown the Union by identifying with them all the time. He assured that their pieces of advice would be adhered to ensure a smooth working relationship with the State Government.
The guests at the Congress offered prayers of God’s protection against untimely death upon the journalists and wished them a fruitful year.