Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA)

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AS THE WORLD GOES ONLINE, WORKING REMOTELY

The CoronaVirus (official name: COVID-19) epidemic has been labelled a pandemic by the World Health Organisation. The virus is reported to have originated from Wuhan in China. As of the 17th of March 2020, more than 198,177 people in at least 165 countries had been infected with COVID-19. In order to protect people and curb the spread of this dreaded infection, there is ongoing global education and awareness about the virus, its spread, advice on crowd movements/gathering, border closures in many countries, limited international travel, work from home directives by countries, organisations etc.

The world economy is under threat. Across the globe, there are fears of shortages as factories and shops are closing/closed to stop the spread of the virus. There is a sharp decline in economic activities worldwide. There are fears of recession and governments are being advised to shore up their reserves to protect their economies.

The virus is unrelenting in its reach, even as The Canadian Prime Minister is billed to be in isolation for fourteen days this month because his wife tested positive for the virus.  Although the mortality statistics reports are skewed more towards the elderly and those who suffer chronic illnesses, it is still a debilitating illness with no immediate cure in sight. Money is being pumped into vaccine research at the moment, but it is feared, this might not be ready within a short period.

Whilst progress to curtail the spread had been made in some countries in Asia, the spread of the virus appears to have garnered life in the United States of America, Europe and Africa.

As a result of this disease, the world has gone “remote”. Some of the well-known preventive measures being undertaken include:

  1. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has called off the Lesser Hajj and restricted inbound flights from some countries
  2. The Pope’s messages were delivered via Tv screens at the Vatican on the 7th March 2020
  3. Football matches are being played in stadiums without spectators or cancelled
  4. Many global events are being conducted virtually, including the ICANN67 meeting for which NiRA staff and Directors were billed to travel to Mexico.

Now more than ever, the Internet has become the best platform for all to conduct their businesses. Whether it is buying and selling, service provision, education or governance, online interactions have become imperative in a world which is battling one of the most pervasive epidemics in recent times. Any business that knows its onions will recognise the times and ensure that they can be found online, with their business conducted, payments made and feedback provided virtually.

This is the time for you to get a .ng domain name, which will assist you to project your business online, and keep your lights on, no matter how much isolation the world experiences as a result of this pandemic. This is also a good time to check that your domain is being hosted locally, with the global economy reeling from the effects of the pandemic on various market indices. Making payments in a foreign currency will definitely cost you more this week than it did last week, for example.

Get your .ng domain name today, take your business online. 

Our hearts go out to all the people who have contracted this virus, and to every family missing them because they are in isolation. We pray that the Almighty grants them quick recovery. Our hearts also go out to those who have lost dear ones,  or those whose businesses or jobs have been negatively impacted.

Finally, let us keep our hands germ-free at all times and should you feel ill and suspect you are infected by the virus,  isolate yourself and call these NCDC emergency hotlines: 08000-970000-10 and 08000corona. An ounce of prevention, they say, is better than a pound of cure. We pray for God’s protection against this insidious virus.

We are urging all to be safe, and stay up to date with information from the National Centre for Disease Control’s information regarding this outbreak. The information can be found at https://ncdc.gov.ng/diseases/sitreps/?cat=14&name=An%20update%20of%20COVID-19%20outbreak%20in%20Nigeria.

 

Muhammed Rudman

President, NiRA

.NG DOMAIN NAME REPORT FEBRUARY 2020

VALEDICTORY/SEND FORTH CEREMONY IN HONOUR OF PROF. ADENIKE OYINOLA OSOFISAN

Wednesday, 4th of March 2020 marked another memorable day in NiRA as a member of the NiRA Board of Trustees’ (BOT), Professor Adenike Oyinlola Osofisan had a Valedictory/Send forth Ceremony celebrated in her honour at the Distance Learning Centre of the University of Ibadan, Oyo state. The ceremony, which also marked Prof. Osofisan's 70th birthday, was organised by the Department of Computer Science of the University and  Doctoral students of Prof. Osofisan.

Representatives from NiRA who witnessed the event included two members of the NiRA Board of Trustees, Dr. Chris Nwannena and Mr. Shina Badaru and staff from the NiRA Secretariat, Mrs. Edith Udeagu, Mr. Ikechukwu Ezeji, Mr. Taiwo Oyeyemi and Mr. Dele Awotunde. Members of the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS), the university community and family members were present at the event.

During her valedictory speech, Prof. Osofisan thanked the staff and students of the Computer Science Department as well as all her doctoral students for putting together the event in her honour. She delivered a speech titled “The Story of my Stewardship – Reminiscences” during which she recounted how she joined the services of the University as a Youth Corps member in August 1976. Her services as a Help Desk Officer/Programmer at the University of Ibadan Computing Center/Information Technology and Media Services (ITeMS) was rewarded with a one-year temporary appointment at the end of her Youth Service year. She travelled to Georgia Institute of Technology for her Master’s in Computer Science in August 1978 and took up a lectureship with The Polytechnic Ibadan upon her return in 1979.

In 1985, she began her doctoral studies in Computer Science at the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University) and successfully completed her studies in 1989, becoming the first person to earn both a bachelor’s and doctoral degree in Computer Science from any Nigerian University and the first Nigerian woman to earn a doctoral degree in Computer Science.  Prof. Osofisan rose through the ranks till she reached the peak in the polytechnic system as a Senior Principal Lecturer, Head of Department and Dean of the Faculty of Science.

In 1999, She began another phase of her career as the Head of Department of Computer Science at the University of Ibadan. Under her watch, the department grew from four to twenty-one teaching staff and developed a vibrant post-graduate programme that has produced up to thirty-nine PhD graduates. Among this group, she personally supervised nineteen PhDs while the twentieth is work in progress. Prof. Osofisan pioneered research in the areas of Internet Technology, Data Mining and Machine Learning as well as Data Warehousing and Human-Computer Interaction. She is the author of over eighty influential publications in the field of Computer Science that appeared in reputable local and international journals and conferences. She also served as the first Director of the University of Ibadan Business School between 2012 and 2014.

Within and outside the University, Prof. Osofisan is committed to the service of her community and humanity. She was elected the first President of the Nigerian Women in IT in 2003. She served as the President and Council Chairman of the Computer Professional Registration Council of Nigeria (CPN) between July 2005 and June 2009, the first woman to serve in such a capacity. She served on the executive council of the Nigeria Computer Society for ten years. She has at various times served as Chairperson of various sensitive committees of the Nigeria Computer Society. In appreciation to a lifetime of service, the community honoured her with numerous awards. She is a Fellow and Life Member of the Nigeria Computer Society.

Prof. Adenike Osofisan was one of the only twenty-two women in Nigeria inducted to the Women Hall of Fame on June 10, 2019. Having excelled in a field in which there is male domination, Prof. Osofisan is an icon in the community promoting girls involvement in STEM and a strong advocate for attracting the girl child into Information Technology fields.

The Board of Trustees, Executive Board of Directors, Executive Secretary and the entire NiRA ecosystem wish Prof. Adenike Osofisan a Happy 70th Birthday and are proud to be associated with her laudable achievements.

Mrs. Ibukun Abimbola Odusote Clocks 60, Retires from Active Service

Wednesday 19th February 2020 was a day of double celebrations for Rev. (Mrs.) Ibukun Abimbola Odusote, the Secretary to the NiRA Board of Trustees. While celebrating her retirement from active service from the Nigeria Civil Service, the day also allowed her the opportunity to mark her 60th birthday.

Mrs. Odusote was the pioneer administrative contact for the .ng ccTLD.  She later became one of the pioneer Board of Trustee (BOT) members of the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA) and is the current secretary to the NiRA BOT.

The double celebration held at the Foursquare Gospel Church Asokoro, Abuja.

Rev. (Mrs.) Odusote’s Work Experience centered on Information Technology in the educational and Professional Sector till late 2009 when she became the Director Information Technology Department, Federal Ministry of Information and Communications and was later promoted to the position of a Permanent Secretary.

Mrs Odustote retired as the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Environment. She had served the Nation in various ministries, including the Ecological Funds Office, Federal Ministry of Power, Federal Ministry of Environment, Federal Ministry of Culture, Tourism and National Orientation, and Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Political Affair Office (SFG), Office of Head of Service, and Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity.

NiRA was ably represented at the event by Elder Chima Onyekwere (OON), Chairman, NiRA BOT and the Abuja Administrative Staff, Mrs. Uchechi Kalu. The occasion witnessed dignitaries from various Nigerian Federal Ministries including the Past Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Education and the Permanent Secretary, Office of the Head of Service of the Federation, Mr. Tope Fashedemi. The occasion was graced by many well-wishers.

In her speech at the occasion, Mrs. Odusote was full of praises to the Almighty God for many successful years as a civil servant and for the grace to attain 60 years of age. We wish Mrs Ibukun Odusote many more grace-filled years.

For us at NiRA, we will forever cherish her contributions. It is our prayers that her retirement life would be as rewarding as the years spent in active service.

ICANN COMPLETED ITS FIRST VIRTUAL COMMUNITY FORUM, ICANN 67, 7 – 12 March 2020

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) concluded the first-ever Virtual Community Forum tagged ICANN67 on the 12th March 2020.

The Forum was earlier scheduled to hold physically in Cancun Mexico but was cancelled and changed to remote participation due to the outbreak of Coronavirus, officially known as COVID-19.

Göran Marby, President & CEO of ICANN, in his report to the ICANN Board towards the Virtual Forum, enumerated Key Highlights & Milestones of the organisation in 2019. The full report can be viewed from the link: https://www.icann.org/uploads/board_report/attachment/91/ICANN_Org_Executive_Team_Report-Los__Angeles_Workshop_2020.pdf

As the ICANN 67 meeting was held remotely, the planned agenda was adjusted to make it more suitable for remote participation.

The ICANN organising team worked hard to give participants the tools to collaborate in the first Virtual Public Meeting.

Some of the key sessions and issues under discussion during the Community Forum included:

  • Community Dialogue on the Proposed Transfer of Ownership of the Public Interest Registry
  • Domain Name Registrant Data: EPDP Phase 2
  • Rights Protection Mechanisms Phase 1

Although the ICANN community was not physically in the same location, the virtual platform allowed collaboration on the important work of ICANN. In the video welcome messages, ICANN President & CEO Göran Marby and ICANN Board Chair Maarten Botterman expressed their thanks to the ICANN community for its flexibility in embracing the online meeting. They also highlighted some of the priorities for ICANN67. ICANN67 was a virtual experience!

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