By Peter Usman//:
Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami has said that the National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA has been elevated following the approval given by President Muhammadu Buhari, for the condition of service of NITDA and the career structure.
Pantami stated that with the current level of NITDA, the agency has been rated to be on the same echelon in terms of benefits with NCC, CDM, NDIC and FIRS, adding that no government has ever done this to the agency since it was established twenty years ago.
The Minister, who stated this on Thursday in Abuja on the occasion of NITDA 20th Anniversary Lecture and Unveiling of Strategic Road Map, asserted that NITDA should ensure we have a digital Nigeria which has been set up by the National Digital Economy, policy and strategy.
“If you look at the approval given by President Mohammadu Buhari, for the condition of service of NITDA and the career structure, no President had ever done this in the history of the agency.
“With these two documents, NITDA has been elevated to be in the same class with NCC, CDM, NDIC and FIRS. Now they are in the same category, they are independent parastatals and they have received the presidential approval to get more and more benefits and I think this is enough for NITDA” Pantami said.
The Minister urged NITDA to focus on IT project clearance and as well increase on surveillance so as to enable the country fight corruption by reducing the price of IT project being executed by the federal public institutions.
“If you look at the quantum amount of money saved through IT project clearance, the quality of the project enhanced and the maintenance of the project, you will discover that even if this is the only responsibility of NITDA, definitely, government has achieved a lot from the agency. But this is not the only responsibility of NITDA, there are many more responsibilities”
Also speaking, the Director General/CEO of NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, said that NITDA has made tremendous achievements, saying that the agency has touched the lives of over 2.5 million Nigerians.
Abdullahi noted that the agency has attracted more foreign investments into the digital economy sector than any developing country globally, stressing that their developmental regulations have created new economic industry such as business process outsourcing, data protection and a robust software industry.
He said, “Our impact is visible across the country, and this can be attested to by the outcomes. Just recently, our sector, the ICT sector bailed Nigeria out of a covid-induced recession that was predicted to crush the Nigerian spirit.
“The NITDA of the next decade is prepared to act as an institutional catalyst to actualise the long-held dream of every Nigerian to build a Nation where peace, prosperity and justice shall reign.
“The foundation for this dream has been laid by President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, championed by the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, who has a laser-focused vision of digitalising Nigeria. This vision has been well articulated by the Nigeria Digital Economy Policy and Strategy, NDEPS”