Sanwo-Olu tasks NITDA to create ecosystem for IT businesses

Lagos State Government has commended National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) for revolutionising the country’s IT sector towards digital economy, urging it to create an ecosystem for business to thrive.

A statement by NITDA Spokesperson, Hadiza Umar, said that Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu gave the commendation when the agency’s Director-General, Mr Kashifu Inuwa, paid a working visit to the governor.

Sanwo-Olu said: “I know NITDA and what it has been doing, you have some intellectual driven people and I urge you to ensure that we create an ecosystem where businesses and processes are enduring to stand the test of time.”

The governor said that the state government had identified IT projects targeted at helping the state to enjoy benefits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

According to him, some of the projects are the proposed building of the biggest Technology Hub in Yaba and the establishment of Science Research Innovation Council in Lagos.

Others are the Unified Fibre Duct project, the N250 million grant given to startups in 2020, the free WiFi for public schools and institutions, among many projects.

Inuwa, on his part, charged the state government to align its IT programmes with NITDA’s  recently unveiled Strategic Road Map and Action Plan, (SRAP) 2021-2024 because of the enormous potential inherent in it.

He disclosed that the roadmap was positioned on seven pedestals that could help to unlock the digital economy potential of the state.

Inuwa said: “Our SRAP 2021-2024 was carefully crafted to unleash your (Lagos State) digital capability. The plan is anchored on seven pillars that can be a source of inspiration for you to invest more in making Lagos the centre of digital excellence.”

The director-general listed the pillars that formed the SRAP to include Developmental Regulations, Digital Literacy and Skills, Digital Transformation, Digital Innovation and Entrepreneurship Cyber Security, Emerging technologies and promotion of Indigenous Contents.

He sought for the constitution of a team between NITDA and LASG that would work out modalities for possible areas of cooperation and support.

Inuwa added that the agency was willing to offer the needed support for better achievements.

He also requested that the state should host the proposed Nigerian Data Protection Regulation (NDPR) Toolkit workshop for the health sector.

The choice of the state was on the basis that it had experience in the implementation, adding that the workshop would provide the requisite tools to the digital transformation of the health sector.

“I can proudly say that Lagos State benefits the most from the data protection regulation in terms of compliance and revenue generation.

“It would be amazing to know that out of the estimated N5.2 billion revenue generated by the Data Protection Compliance Organisations(DPCOs), Lagos-based DPCO have captured over N4.5 billion, which represents over 86 per cent of total revenue generated in the data protection industry,” he said.

The NITDA boss also acknowledged that the state has largest startups ecosystem in Africa with over 400 startups valued at two billion US dollars.

The DG advised the state government to create the enabling environment, issue appropriate regulations and execute the right programmes that would facilitate the emergence of the state as the African digital economy hub.

Inuwa added that the agency’s initiatives had helped the state and its residents to generate several billions because the state hosts 90 per cent of indigenous software developers, ICT hardware manufactures and consultancy service providers.


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