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Ikeja Electric Bags Three ISO Certifications

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Ikeja Electric

By Adedapo Adesanya

Ikeja Electric Distribution Company (IKEDC) has scored another first in the electricity sector, after bagging three latest International Organization for Standardization (ISO) certifications; ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015 and ISO 45001:2018 in recognition of its effective implementation of Occupational Safety & Health, Environment Management and Quality Management processes.

In addition, the DisCo also emerged as one of the runners-up for the Most Responsive Organization to COVID-19 Crisis at the Nigeria Risk Awards 2020, and also bagged the AfriSAFE Merit Award 2020.

The management of Ikeja Electric, last week, was presented the ISO 9001:2015 (Quality Management System), ISO 14001:2015 (Environmental Management System), and ISO 45001:2018 (Occupational Health and Safety Management System) 2020.

The official presentation was held at the company’s headquarters in Lagos, attended by Country Director, DQS, Mr Lawrence Ogudu; Organizer of AfriSAFE Award, Mr Femi Da Silva; Chairman of Ikeja Chapter, Nigerian Institution of Power Engineers (NIPE), Mr Vincent Obaseki and General Manager, Conrad Clark (Nigerian Risk Award), Mr Femi Iroko, Mr Wale Bakare (one of the AfriSAFE Judges) among others.

Speaking on the achievements, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ikeja Electric, Mrs Folake Soetan, said the company has again reaffirmed its commitment to high standards, in line with global best practices.

According to her, these prestigious awards demonstrate that IE management processes and operations are effectively conducted by quality policies and forward-thinking leadership.

She said: “We are indeed honoured by these certifications. I am dedicating these achievements to the entire management and staff who continuously give their best through strategic initiatives and innovation that deliver growth, improved service delivery and customer satisfaction for the brand”.

“The fact that we have gained these recognition does not mean we have attained the desired peak or that we would become complacent, but rather we will continue to work hard towards operational excellence and improvement of service in line with our mantra – “Customer first; technology Now,” Mrs Soetan noted.

Also commenting on the occasion, Head of Quality, Safety, Health and Environment (QHSE), Mr Jamiu Badmos, explained that the IE remains the industry trailblazer in areas of innovations including occupational health & safety and environment initiatives. The result of the audit as approved by the Technical Committee from DQS in Germany has again certified Ikeja Electric to be compliant with global best practice.

According to Mr Badmos, adoption of technology and purposeful engagement of staff, customers and stakeholders have greatly contributed towards achieving effective quality, health, safety and environmental performance and operational excellence.

“We will continue to use risk-based thinking throughout our operations to promote a proactive approach for identifying risks and opportunities, thereby making continual improvement in order to enhance governance, customer experience, operational excellence and sustainability, he said.

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is the world’s largest independent, non-governmental organizations that develop voluntary international standard and facilitate world trade by providing common standards among nations.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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Adisa Receives Media Friendly State Lawmaker Award

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Media Friendly State Lawmaker

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

For his contributions to the infrastructural development of his constituency and outstanding achievements as a lawmaker, the member representing Afijio constituency in the Oyo State House of Assembly, Mr Seyi Adisa, has been given the Media Friendly State Lawmaker Award.

The award was conferred on the state legislator by the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Oyo State Council during its press week at the Press Centre, Iyaganku, Ibadan.

Chairman of the NUJ Oyo chapter, Mr Demola Babalola, disclosed that the award was in recognition of Mr Adisa’s outstanding performance as a lawmaker, who has excelled in his calling as well contributed to the development of society.

He said his contributions to the development of his people, communities in his constituency and his senatorial district of Oyo North are laudable.

“You are given this special award of exemplary performance and also awarded as the Media-Friendly State Lawmaker of the Year in Oyo state because we believe you deserve it,” he said.

While receiving the award, Mr Adisa declared his appreciation of the gesture, saying “big thanks to the Oyo State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) for this special recognition and Award of Exemplary Performance that also doubled as an Award for the Media-Friendly State Lawmaker of the Year.

“I do not take this for granted.”

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We Will Defend Free Press in Nigeria—US Government Assures

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Free Press in Nigeria

By Adedapo Adesanya

The United States government has promised to do everything possible to defend free press in Nigeria, which it said remains vital to democracy and good governance.

The American government expressed this with a partnership, through its Embassy, with the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE) for the first of the six media-focused Town Halls and Workshops in Lagos on Thursday.

The event will also take place across the country in the next several months.

The capacity-building programme will provide a forum for over 200 participating Nigerian editors and leaders of the independent press to discuss and share best practices and to also hear from the United States government.

Experts on topics such as journalistic standards, identifying bias, and conducting fact-based investigative reporting to better inform the Nigerian public will be provided.

Delivering keynote remarks at the opening programme in Lagos, the US Ambassador, Mrs Mary Beth Leonard discussed the challenges faced by Nigeria and other democracies across the world and highlighted democracy’s greatest strength: the ability to improve upon and reinvent itself.

She quipped that when belief in democracy, good governance and elections are restored, Nigerians will want to be a part of that system and will defend it.

Ambassador Leonard noted, “Our hope is that in this forum today is that you will lead and serve as catalysts for further discussions on countering disinformation; increasing transparency; solution building; and encouraging media literacy and their contribution to a democracy that is accountable to its people.”

The US government is committed to initiatives that build media capacity in Nigeria, she added.

According to her, for years, the US Mission has funded partnerships that promote Nigeria’s democratic governance, unity and stability by improving government transparency and accountability, the rule of law, free and professional media, as well as civil society capacity and engagement.

On his part, the General Secretary of NGE, Mr Iyobosa Uwugiaren, said, “At the end of the project, we expect to see a pool of Nigerian editors, senior journalists and media managers, who will be galvanised and committed to the highest ethical standard and to take robust actions towards this.

“Editors who will be committed to the promotion and protection of the right to an independent press, freedom of expression and deepening democratic space; and constantly projecting issue-based governance in defence of the mass of the Nigerian people.”

The Town Halls and editor workshops are supported through a grant from the US Embassy’s Public Affairs Section in Abuja to the NGE.

In addition to Lagos, the programmes will take place in Kano in January 2022, then Yola, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Enugu will follow in subsequent months.

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780 Children Abducted for Ransom in 2021—Amnesty Nigeria

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boko haram suicide bomber children

By Adedapo Adesanya

Amnesty International Nigeria has reported that about 780 children were abducted for ransom in 2021 with 61 still in captivity months after the mass abduction by bandits.

The group in a statement noted that many schools shut down indefinitely because of rising insecurity, saying that Nigerian authorities are failing children.

Amnesty Nigeria explained that months after their abduction during mass attacks on schools which also terminated the education, thousands of children in captivity are experiencing horrific and degrading treatment at the hands of bandits.

The organisation explained that children in orphanages, schools and places of worship are often abducted and held in captivity for weeks, sometimes months depending on when or if the demands of their abductors are met.

It added that children in school buses or walking to schools are also sometimes ambushed and abducted for ransom.

Speaking on this, Mr Osai Ojigho said, “School children in some parts of northern Nigeria are constantly at the risk of death or abduction. More than 780 children have been abducted for ransom since February 2021 during mass attacks on schools or religious institutions, with some of the children killed during the attacks.

“Parents of the abducted children or the school authorities are sometimes made to provide food and clothing for the children while in captivity.”

Amnesty noted that the future of thousands of school children in Northern Nigeria remains bleak as hundreds of schools in some states have been closed indefinitely due to rising insecurity. Many children abandoned education due to the psychological trauma of witnessing violent attacks or living in captivity.

A primary school teacher who teaches in the community, where 317 school children were abducted on February 26, 2021, in Jangebe LGA, Zamfara state told Amnesty International that insecurity has drastically reduced school attendance, as children are afraid of attending schools even when forced by their parents.

A 15-year-old boy, who sustained an injury while escaping mass abduction in his school, told Amnesty International that he would not be returning to school, whenever it reopens.

“If school reopens, I won’t go back to the boarding school, I will rather become a day student elsewhere. Anytime I remember what happens I get scared; it’s disturbing, I want all the children most especially my cousins to be rescued.

“When education institutions are targeted or attacked, the damage and consequences can be major and far-reaching. The protection of children’s lives is paramount, and the Nigerian authorities have a duty to ensure that the country’s educational sector is not further threatened by the abductions, intimidation and killing of school children,” Mr Ojigho said.

Section 27 of the Child Rights Act prohibits the abduction of children. Having ratified the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, Amnesty noted that Nigeria has an obligation to take appropriate measures to prevent the abduction of children and to guarantee children’s right to education.

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