This Day (Lagos)

Nigeria: Group Urges FG to Make NITDA a Commission

Stakeholders in the Information Technology sector have asked the National Assembly to collaborate with the National Information Development Agency (NITDA) to fast track the enactment of appropriate legal framework for smooth integration of IT in all sectors.

They have also prescribed that NITDA be upgraded to a National Information Technology Development Commission (NITDC) to ensure adequate regulation of the IT sector and be more empowered to drive the ongoing growth process.

The stakeholders' recommendation came amidst the realisation of the role of IT in the nation economy.

Their position was part of a 14-point agenda they recommended for implementation by government, relevant government agencies and the private sector to drive the sector in the years ahead.

The Information and Communications Technology (ICT) group also stated the need for government to include local IT manufacturers in its international trade missions in order to expose the country's local manufacturers and stakeholders to best practices in the areas of service, software, knowledge and innovation.

They called on government to encourage local ICT companies to compete internationally through various measures including reduction of software and hardware importation into the country.

Government was also asked to continuously facilitate the establishment of knowledge based clusters (ICT Incubation Centres) in a strategic imperative to enhance the standard and quality of local content implementation processes in the country.

The stakeholders were called upon to identify an ICT Champion and a lobby group to advance the growth of ICT, while indigenous hardware and software manufacturers were expected to commence the development of workstations for forensic Technology works.

Director-General of NITDA Professor Cleopas Angaye, in his opening remark at the event noted that the commitment of the agency was to make Nigeria a country to be proud of in terms of technologically driven services.

Angaye said the era of a mono economy should become a thing of the past adding government alone cannot achieve this hence all must brainstorm on the way forward. He concluded that with the collaboration "of all of us, I strongly believe that we can achieve our dream and vision of a new and better Nigeria".

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