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Operators join forces with Federal Government to fight COVID-19

By y Adeyemi Adepetun
25 March 2020   |   3:13 am
Some service providers in the telecoms and ICT industry have joined the Federal Government in the fight against the pandemic, COVID-19.

Customers offered N10m intervention

Some service providers in the telecoms and ICT industry have joined the Federal Government in the fight against the pandemic, COVID-19.

In their announcements yesterday, eCommerce platform, Jumia said it is offering the support of its integrated ecosystem, which includes a marketplace, logistics and online payments to governments in Nigeria, cum Africa, as part of the global action against the COVID-19.

Group Head of Institutional Affairs at Jumia, Juliet Anammah, said the firm is proud to partner with relevant authorities to help fight against COVID-19 and support “our communities which continue to support us. E-commerce platforms like ours, with e-payment and last-mile delivery capabilities, are uniquely positioned to be part of Africa’s response strategy to this pandemic and we are swiftly taking actions.”

Jumia’s actions to support governments in their fight against COVID-19 include the facilitation of social distancing by enabling consumers to buy online. The firm explained that by offering contactless delivery options, it is eliminating physical contact and potentially reduce a person to person infection.

The firm said it will also provide access to affordable basic foods and sanitary essentials on the market place platform. Jumia said by partnering with thousands of vendors, like Reckitt Benckiser, and others, it has been able to maintain fair prices and fight against speculation.

On its part, a telecommunications firm, Airtel, said it has commenced a national awareness campaign to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

The telco also announced its donation of 40 mobile phones complete with a Closed User Group (CUG) to the Port Health Services, an arm of the Federal Ministry of Health, to support its effort to track and verify passenger information at the country’s local and international airports.

Airtel said the nationwide awareness campaign went live yesterday, March 24 and will be heavy on both traditional and social media with simple and creative messages that will be translated into Yoruba, Hausa and Igbo and broadcast across radio, billboard, press, phones/devices and digital media.

The firm explained that the phones donated to the Ports Health Services, according to the leading mobile telecommunications service provider, will ensure that passengers on incoming flights from the affected countries globally, who may be at risk, can be reached post arrival for further medical checks and quarantine where necessary.

Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer of Airtel Nigeria, Segun Ogunsanya, while speaking on the donation, said the company, like every other organization is committed to any measure that will help curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

“The phones, airtime and CUG are probably the least we can do in the circumstance to empower the gallant men and women at the forefront of the fight against the scourge. It is also our belief that the robust national campaign will deepen awareness and help more Nigerians to take the precautionary measures seriously,” he said.

On its part, Konga announced an N10 million intervention package to cushion the effects of the pandemic on its teeming customers. The fund, which will be disbursed to Konga customers through vouchers, will go towards offsetting some of the purchases made by customers during this period. In addition, Konga has also announced free delivery for purchases made by customers.

Konga statement reads: ‘We know that many of our customers are experiencing uncertainties resulting from this global outbreak. To help during this challenging time, we are offering N10 million in vouchers to support their purchases this season.’

“Deliveries are now super safe and free. We have equipped our last-mile delivery agents and partners with gloves and face-masks. All our warehouses and delivery partners have been trained on the best practices on hygiene and social distancing. On top of that, all deliveries to you are now free and super-fast.”

Further, Konga enjoined customers to observe standard safety precautions; even as it reiterated the confidence-inducing precautions available to protect shoppers.

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