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MTN Foundation Rallies Stakeholder to Combat Substance Abuse in Nigeria

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In its efforts to curb the menace of substance abuse, the MTN Foundation, through the MTN Anti-Substance Abuse Programme (ASAP), recently convened a stakeholder conference in Lagos to address the pressing issue of substance abuse in Nigeria.

Present at the conference were the Hon. Commissioner for Youth and Social Development, Lagos State, Mr. Mobolaji Ogundele; Commander of Narcotics, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, Lagos State Command, Abubakar Liman Wali; Chairman, MTN Foundation, Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi (OFR), among other key stakeholders.

The MTN Anti-Substance Abuse Programme is a multi-stakeholder and sectoral behaviour change initiative aimed at reducing the rate of first-time substance abusers amongst young Nigerians aged between 10 and 25 years.

In his opening remarks, Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi (OFR), Chairman, MTN Foundation, emphasized the strategic importance and significance of the ASAP initiative. “Five years ago, we examined the dire situation and concluded that something had to be done about the menace of substance abuse.

“We felt it was time to address the problem beyond boardroom speeches, leading to the birth of ASAP. Drug abuse is a global phenomenon, but every Nation must devise its own strategy to tackle its unique challenges.

“In Saudi Arabia, the approach is different; in America, in Asia, the responses vary. Nigeria must address its drug abuse problem independently.

“I am pleased with the Foundation for this initiative and especially thank our major partners, the NDLEA and the UNODC, for their unwavering support over the years.”

Substance abuse remains a significant challenge, exacerbated by the high unemployment rates in Nigeria. According to a report from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBC), Nigeria’s unemployment rate surged to 5.0 per cent in the third quarter of 2023 from 4.2 per cent in the previous quarter.

The report also adds that the labour force participation rate among the working-age population declined to 79.5 percent in Q3 compared to 80.4 percent in Q2.

This economic challenge fuels the prevalence of drug abuse, as many youths turn to substance use as an escape from their harsh realities. Studies indicate that approximately 14.4% of Nigerians aged 15 to 64 use drugs, which is nearly three times the global average. This alarming statistic underscores the urgency for comprehensive intervention strategies.

The Hon. Commissioner for Youth and Social Development, Lagos State, Mr. Mobolaji Ogundele, who represented the Executive Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, highlighted the state’s commitment to tackling this issue. “In Lagos State, we have witnessed the devastating impact of drug abuse on families, communities, and the socio-economic fabric of our society.

“This is why I am pleased to join the Board, the management of MTN Foundation, and other stakeholders at the MTN Stakeholder Conference to mark the International Day Against Drug Abuse.

“The theme of this year’s commemoration, ‘Breaking the Cycle; Effective Strategies for Preventing Drug Abuse Among Nigeria’s Youth,’ is not just timely but imperative. It also resonates deeply with our administration’s vision to safeguard the future of our nation.

“I appreciate MTN Nigeria, who, through its MTN Foundation and in collaboration with stakeholders, launched the ASAP initiative. Thank you for aligning with our administration in our goal of building a greater Lagos.”

Commenting on the strategic partnership between the MTN Foundation and the Lagos State Government, Odunayo Sanya, Executive Director, MTN Foundation, stated, “We are grateful for our partnership with Lagos State. Lagos is unique; it is the economic nerve center of Nigeria, and initiatives implemented here have the potential to be replicated across the entire country. This collaboration allows us to work together on effective policies to combat substance abuse.”

The MTN ASAP stakeholder conference highlighted the importance of collective action and evidence-based strategies in combating substance abuse. The event underscored the necessity for increased investment in prevention efforts, advocating for collaborative approaches to tackle this multifaceted issue.


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Ugo Onwuaso is an ICT enthusiast. He believes technology should be used for general good. He holds a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from the Lagos state University. Dear Reader, Your support matters. But we believe that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. That is why, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and finance and how they affect lives. Our incisive and analytical view of how technology news affects the daily life help individuals and organizations make up their minds. Quality journalism costs money. Today, we're asking that you support us to do more. Kindly support our effort to deliver technology and finance journalism to everyone in the world. Donate as little as N1,000. Bank transfers can be made to: UBA Plc 1017156876 Communication Week Media Ltd

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WhatsApp to Deactivate Support for Certain Phone Models over Incompatibility

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WhatsApp has announced that it will no longer be supported on a variety of phone models starting from the summer of 2024.


WhatsApp to Deactivate Support for Certain Phone Models over Incompatibility

This decision affects a significant number of devices from popular brands such as Samsung, Motorola, Huawei, Apple, Sony, and LG.

Users are advised to check the list of incompatible devices to determine whether their phones are affected and whether they need to upgrade to continue using WhatsApp securely.

Surprisingly, some of the models on the list are quite old, but due to their decent hardware or lack of upgrade options, some users have been clinging onto WhatsApp for dear life.

At present, WhatsApp is recommending that users only use the app if they have a device running on Android 5.0 or later, or an iPhone with iOS 12 or newer.

The affected models include popular devices like Samsung Galaxy Ace Plus, Motorola Moto G, and various iPhone models like 5, 6, and SE.

This development highlights the rapid evolution of technology and the need for users to stay current with their devices to access essential services like WhatsApp.

As we move towards a more advanced digital age, it becomes increasingly crucial for users to regularly check for updates and ensure compatibility with the latest software and applications.

In light of WhatsApp’s decision to discontinue support for certain phone models, there are several key points that users should be aware of regarding this future incompatibility issue.

One of the main challenges associated with WhatsApp ceasing support for older phone models is the potential security risks involved.

Unsupported devices may become more vulnerable to security threats as they will no longer receive essential updates and patches from WhatsApp.

Additionally, users who are unable or unwilling to upgrade their devices may face difficulties in communicating with friends and family who continue to use WhatsApp.

On the controversial side, some users argue that tech companies should provide support for older devices to ensure inclusivity and accessibility for all users, regardless of their device’s age or specifications.

However, from WhatsApp’s perspective, maintaining support for outdated models may hinder the app’s ability to innovate and introduce new features that require more advanced hardware.


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Glo Deploys AI Services for Customers to Earn Millions while Learning

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Digital solutions services provider, Globacom, has unveiled three innovative AI-focused services that aim to improve customer satisfaction and provide users the chance to profit from AI and win rewards on the network at the same time.

In addition to offering users the possibility to win thrilling rewards through lottery draws, Globacom disclosed in a press statement that the services would offer priceless insights into utilizing AI for everyday requirements.

One of the services, called “Glo Awoof Win EverWage,” is a gaming platform that gives users the chance to either win a lifetime wage or take part in a monthly draw that offers a N12 million prize.

Subscribers will also get regular payments from this service, thus having a steady source of income free from the limitations of a conventional job. Globacom stated that Glo EverWage “promises peace of mind in today’s dynamic economic environment, whether you seek supplementary income or financial stability.”

Subscribers can participate in the drawings for EverWage by calling *20791# and following the instructions to be eligible for a chance to win N12 million per month and daily cash prizes.

In a similar vein, “Glo Awoof Win SMS-to-Ai” uses artificial intelligence (AI) to give users rapid, precise information on any subject without requiring an internet connection.

The “Ask AI by Glo” service is an SMS-based platform that provides users with access to a variety of informational resources, including news, sports scores, weather predictions, traffic updates, educational advice, and celebrity information. By dialing *20791# on their handsets, subscribers can also take part in the network’s jackpot draws for a chance to win thrilling prizes.

Subscribers can also use Glo SMS-to-AI to ask queries even in the absence of internet access, by texting their inquiries to 20791 and the AI platform will respond to them right away. Regular questioners will be informed through their Glo lines and have a chance to win interesting rewards.

The third one, “Glo Awoof Win Ai Fortune”, is an educational service designed to empower users by teaching them how to leverage Ai for generating income and improving business processes.

“From foundational Ai concepts to advanced business strategies, our comprehensive curriculum equips you with the skills to harness Ai for income generation and business enhancement. Subscribers can engage in interactive learning modules, earn certifications, and showcase their expertise in monthly competitions”, the company disclosed.

Subscribers to AI Fortune can obtain study packets to read and enter to win prizes by dialling *20791# and following the instructions.

According to Globacom, users who want to take advantage of the three AI-powered services should dial *20791# on their mobile devices in order to choose among the available options. Daily one-time or auto subscriptions to the services cost N100, weekly one-time or auto subscriptions cost N200, and monthly one-time or auto subscriptions cost N500.


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Y’ello Care since ‘07: 17 Years of Unwavering Commitment to Community Development

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For nearly two decades, MTN has demonstrated a steadfast dedication to community development through its flagship corporate social responsibility initiative, Y’ello Care.

The annual program with the theme “Learn Today, Lead Tomorrow”, now celebrating its 17th year, exemplifies the telco’s commitment to making a positive impact across the various communities it serves.

Launched in 2007, Y’ello Care has evolved into one of the most significant corporate volunteer programs in the telecommunications sector. Each year, employees take time off from their daily tasks to give back to the community and participate in meaningful charitable initiatives, reflecting the company’s fundamental principles of innovation, leadership, and integrity.

The heart of Y’ello Care lies in its volunteers. MTN employees from different departments and regions come together to contribute their time, skills, and resources. This culture of volunteerism not only benefits the communities but also fosters a sense of purpose and camaraderie among its staff.

Since its inception, the Y’ello Care initiative has tackled various social challenges, from education and health to environmental sustainability and economic empowerment. The program’s success is measured by the number of projects completed and the lasting positive changes it brings to the lives of individuals and communities.

Speaking about this year’s edition, Tobe Okigbo, Chief Corporate Services & Sustainability Officer, MTN Nigeria, said “Y’ello Care is about the MTN ecosystem giving back and contributing their time, money, and resources to make a positive impact. This year, we’re focusing on education in remote areas, supporting three projects that will provide access to quality education for young Nigerians,” said

One of the cornerstones of Y’ello Care this year is its focus on education and this year the initiative is supporting the KNOSK charity education initiative (Study Better Packs),building and refurbishing Iwerekun Community High school, providing learning materials, and organizing vocational skills workshops. These efforts aim at bridging the educational gap and equipping students with the skills needed for the future.

Also, Y’ello Care has made significant contributions to improving healthcare services. Through medical outreach programs, health awareness campaigns, and the provision of essential medical equipment, it has helped enhance the quality of healthcare in underserved areas.

Beyond everything,

As Y’ello Care completesits 17th year, the company further proves its committment to deepening its impact on its community. MTN Nigeria’s unwavering commitment to community development through the Y’ello Care initiative is a testament to the power of corporate social responsibility.

The 17-year journey of Y’ello Care tells a remarkable story of dedication, impact, and hope. It serves as an inspiration for other organizations to engage in meaningful community service and underscores the importance of giving back to the society in which they operate.

 

 

 


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