The Minister of Communications, Barrister Adebayo Shittu has called for concerted efforts among the Information Communication Technology stakeholders to review the curriculum of the computer related courses in line with the current trend and globally acceptable standard.
The Minister made this call at the 26th National Conference and Exhibition of Nigeria Computer Society in Abuja.
Barrister Shittu who decried the gap that exists between the Industry and the Educational Sector, said “there is a need for an urgent review of the ICT syllabus to reflect what is attainable in the industry to meet global standard and international best practices.
Essentially, the Minister stated that the Nigerian ICT graduates that underwent National Information Technology Development Agency’s one-month training attested to the fact that what they learnt in a period of one month was not achieved in their 4 years in Nigerian Tertiary Institution.
He advised the Computer Professionals
However, making reference to the theme of the conference- “Information Technology for National Safety and Security” Barrister Shittu stated that the theme of the conference is relevant to President Muhammadu Buhari’s agenda in securing the lives and properties of Nigerians, adding that achieving national safety and security will encourage growth in Nigeria.
“We all know that ICT is the globally recognized enabler in all spheres of development and it is most appropriate for NCS to step in by offering the nation an authentic platform to explore the role of ICT in national safety and security.”
In addition, He said that it has become paramount to tackle the menace of Boko Haram, Niger Delta militancy and all forms of security challenges confronting the country with enhanced efficient ICT tools and professionalism.
The Minister lamented that aside the physical security threat, the nation is also enmesh with cyberspace threat which has ripped off the country several Billions of Naira.
“It is quite shocking that Nigeria loses about N127 billion which is 0.08 percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) yearly to cybercrime. Evidence abounds of growing electronic fraud and threats to both private and government database.”
According to the Minister, the government has devised counter measures to address the menace of the cyber threat by setting up Computer Emergency Response Team both in NITDA and Office of National Security Adviser.
“Additionally, to further improve the nation’s preparedness to secure cyberspace, the Cybercrime Advisory Council has also been inaugurated. The council is expected to facilitate the implementation of the Cybercrime Act of 2015 as well as the National Cybersecurity Policy and Strategy.
Furthermore, the Minister however, urged the members of the society not to focus only on the area of using ICT to tackle the security challenges in the country but they should also widely explore its potentials as an enabler and growth stimulator.
“We should expand the scope of the conference to see ICT as an outstanding and indispensable tool that fosters revenue generation for the private and public sector; create more jobs, facilitate global competitiveness and stimulate growth in the economy. Let us see how we can leverage on ICT to add value to our local content drive and grow the ICT sector”.
The Minister stated that although ICT is currently contributing up to 10 percent to the nation’s GDP with over $32 billion Foreign Direct Investment, (FDI) there is still, the need for accelerated development to enhance job creation.
In conclusion, He assured the participants at the conference and the Society at large, of government’s commitment to seize this opportunity and work together so as to achieve the great vision of our country. He also challenged the Professionals to come up with recommendations that would be beneficial to the country.