Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has rewarded three students who emerged winners of its Nationwide Essay Competition titled: “Broadband – A catalyst for national development in the country.
The first prize winner of the essay competition, Mr. Odonoekuma Ekuma, a 500 level medical student of the University of Nigeria Nsukka got N500,000 cash, a laptop and a printer.
While Mr. Abdulkareem Ibraheem, a student of History and International Relations, University of Ilorin, who came second went home with N300,000 and a laptop.
The third prize winner, Mr. Asogwa Peter also a medical student at the University of Nigeria Nsukka, also got N200,000 and a laptop, while seven winners were given N50, 000 each as consolation prizes.
Speaking at the event, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta assured the senators the provision and deployment of broadband services would form a major strategic thrust of his vision for NCC and telecom industry for Nigeria.
Prof. Danbatta said, in consistent with the national broadband plan which envisages deployment of broadband infrastructure as very important responsibility, has been assigned to NCC.
According to him, “As a result of this important assignment given to NCC, we have since licensed the infrastructure companies,” Adding that it will provide broadband infrastructure with fibre technology in the Lagos zone as well as the North central zone of the country”.
The Vice Chairman congratulated the winners for emerging the best in the essay topic, which he described as apt.
“And I am very happy to say that the president is a listening one who is very much committed to the broadband development plan which we are trying to implement to the latter.
“I urge everyone in the commission and friends of the commission to assist towards ensuring that we achieve this important task which is well thought of and to be implemented.’’
Earlier, the Director, Public Affairs of NCC, Mr. Tony Ojobo said that the commission placed adverts in major dailies to announce the commencement of the essay competition for interested participants.
Ojobo said that the essay competition was organised in order to increase awareness on the subject matter.
He said that the competition was also designed to engage and enhance research skills, encourage academic competition and excellence and build the capacity of students in the higher institution across the country.
The director said at the close of submission of entries on January 13, the commission received 639 entries for the competition from both public and private universities, polytechnics and colleges of education in the country.
According to him, “This is an overwhelming increase from the 339 entries received for the first essay competition. However, only the first 500 entries were eligible for consideration and evaluation”.
He said, “After the assessment, a total of 444 participants scored 10.6 per cent, while 56 participants scored 70 per cent and above”.
A plagiarism check was carried out on all the participants who scored 70 per cent and above, at the end, three students emerged winners, ‘’he said.
Responding on behalf of the winners, the first prize winner, Mr. Odonoekuma Ekuma commended NCC for giving them the opportunity to showcase their talents towards contributing to the growth of internet use in Nigeria.

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