The Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, GCON has stated that Nigeria is set for greater achievement in Technology.
He made this statement at the opening ceremony of the eNigeria 2016 with the theme: Leveraging ICT Innovation for Economic Diversification; at International Conference Centre, Abuja.
Prof Osinbajo disclosed that the Federal Government is investing aggressively in technology,
“We have budgeted for training of 65,000 young Nigerians in Hardware and Software Services as part of the Social Investment Programme of the Federal Government which has a very active collaboration with the Ministry of Communication and of course NITDA.
This will mean that we will be building more local capacity to assemble hardware, to write innovative programs. We will also be focusing on technology for media and entertainment which is a big growth area. We intent to create a reservoir of human capacity in technology that can be exported internationally”.
Speaking on Policies, the Vice President emphasised on the need to identify those policies that will make a difference and that will involve a lot of collaborations between the Private and Public Sector, adding that the Public Sector is willing to collaborate with the Private Sector.
The Honourable Minister of the Federal Ministry of Communications, Barrister Abdur-Raheem Adebayo Shittu in his remark stated that the present economic challenges and the dwindling revenue from oil sector spur national alternative to diversifying the economy for sustainable development. There is no such better alternative than Information Communication and Technology (ICT), which has recorded tremendous growth and contributed about 12.62% to total nation GDP and 12.68% to total real GDP in second quarter of 2016 according to National Bureau of Statistics; He said.
The Minister disclosed that the Ministry of Communications in conjunction with NITDA will be ensuring that all tiers of government in Nigeria consider the adoption of the Open Data Policy as a means of creating jobs, making data available for policy formulation and decision making as well as reducing the cost of governance and improving service delivery.
“Data has become the currency of a knowledge-based economy, driving innovation and boosting businesses at various levels, and must be protected at all cost. As we prepare for knowledge-based economy, the need to protect data cannot be over emphasized” he added.
Earlier in his welcome remarks, the Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), PhD. stated that NITDA will collaborate with industry leaders and put policies in place to support young Nigerians to develop world-class ICT products.
“In addition to the emphasis that NITDA will lay on regulation, local content development and capacity building, we are making concerted efforts to create, as well as review, existing standards and guidelines. This will enable us to regulate the sector in line with the highest global standards. We are committed to ensuring that the proliferation of fake and sub-standard ICT products and services in the country is eliminated or at least significantly curtailed”.
The NITDA DG added that “in order to bring about the objectives we have set for ourselves under my leadership, we will correct irregularities, fight corrupt practices and resist unnecessary and unproductive interference in the affairs of the Agency”.