The Federal Government has urged other African member states of the International Telecommunication Union [ITU] to support Nigeria's candidacy as well as a Nigerian vying for the post of Director of Telecommunications Bureau of ITU, Mr William Ijeh.
The Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu made the appeal on Tuesday at the African Telecommunications Union [ATU] Plenipotentiary Preparatory Meeting in Abuja.
He said: "As you are also aware that the ITU will be conducting election into various elective positions at the ITU 2018 Plenipotentiary Conference (PP-18) later this year, I am pleased to inform you that, Nigeria will be presenting itself for re-election into the Administrative Council seat as well as presenting Mr William ljeh for election as Director, Telecommunication Development Bureau of the International Telecommunication Union (lTU) during the ITU 2018 Plenipotentiary Conference to be held in Dubai, United Arab Emirate in October/November, 2018.
"I therefore wish to seek your unflinching support for Nigeria twin candidature", he said.
Mr Shittu explained that the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference is the key event at which lTU Member States decide the future role of the organisation thereby determining the organisation ability to influence and effect the development of Telecommunications/ICT worldwide.
Shittu said the meeting would enable member states to put their heads together and come up with preliminary positions to fight for a common cause at the upcoming plenipotentiary conference.
He said: "I understand that the Plenipotentiary conference is the top policy-making body of the ITU held every four years, the conference sets the union's general policies; Adopts four-year strategic and financial plans and; Elect the senior management team of the organisation, the members of council and the members of the Radio Regulation Board (RRB)."
Earlier in his welcome remarks, the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Communication, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, said Nigeria sees the work of ITU as integral to the development of ICT in Africa and in tune with its focus of achieving ubiquitous Broadband deployment that will in turn lead to sustainable socio-economic development of its citizenry.
According to him, "This we believe can only be achieved through continued and deepened partnerships of which the ITU provides the most ideal platform.
"The challenges posed by the development of new technologies cannot be over emphasized but we are all in agreement that the benefits far outstrip whatever risks we may face. Nigeria has witnessed phenomenal growth in its ICT sector and acknowledges the support of the ITU in the country's ICT evolution."
The ITU Secretary General, Mr. Houlin Zhao, said the meeting was a very important one to get members from all the African continent come together to prepare their common proposals to this PP 2018 conference of the ITU later in the year.
He said their proposals and suggestions would help the ITU's strategize on future plans based on input from members.