NITDA Targets 20% ICT Contribution To Nigeria’s GDP By 2020 | Independent Newspapers Limited
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NITDA Targets 20% ICT Contribution To Nigeria’s GDP By 2020

Posted: Nov 19, 2015 at 10:44 am   /   by   /   comments (0)
By Chibuzor Emejor
National Information Technology Development Agency [NITDA] says it targets to increase the contributions of Information and Communications Technology to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product [GDP] to 20 per cent by 2020.
Director General of NITDA, Peter Jack, announced this on Tuesday in Abuja at the e-Nigeria Conference organised by the Agency in collaboration with the Independent National Electoral Commission [INEC].
Jack said the current contribution of the ICT sector to the nation’s GDP stands at 10per cent, adding that measures have been put in place to scale up the contributions of the sector to the economy.
He also pointed out that NITDA together with INEC was considering the adoption of e-voting in the 2019 elections.
He however expressed worry that the National Assembly is yet to legislate and provide legal framework for the use of e-voting in Nigeria.
Also speaking, the Vice President of Nigeria, Yemi Osinbajo, said the present administration would massively deploy ICT in the diversification of the Nigeria’s economy.
Osinbajo represented by the Deputy Chief of Staff to the President, Ade Ipaye, assured that employment opportunities, promotion of entrepreneurship and wealth generation would be vigorously pursued through the use of ICT by President Muhammed Buhari’s administration.
According to him, “Government intends to use ICT and technological parks to create employment, promote entrepreneurship, beef up security, fight corruption and implement a suitable national Change Agenda.”
Speaking on theme of the Conference entitled, “Towards an Effective Electoral Process in Nigeria: The Role of ICT, Local Content and Information Security”, Osinbajo charged NITDA to develop ICT mechanism that would improve Nigeria’s electoral processes.
He further tasked NITDA to use annual e-Nigeria conference to transform Nigeria into Africa’s ICT hub.
In his keynote address, the former INEC Chairman, Attahiru Jega, said technology adaptation in the 2015 elections had gone a long way to ensure transparency and effectiveness of the electoral processes.
According to Jega, “ The use of technology for biometric registration of voters, for the issuance of smart permanent voters card (PVCs) to voters and for voter verification and authentication using the smart card reader, have all added value to the integrity of the 2015 general elections.
“So has the initiative to scan and upload on a database all result sheets for all the elections, which were made accessible to all for some months after the elections.
“Thus, use of technology in general and ICT in particular has helped to address persistent challenges, such as multiple voting, inflation of the register and many other fraudulent activities, associated with the conduct of elections in Nigeria in the past.
He however identified challenges in the use of technology during the elections such as lack or inadequacy of original equipment manufacturers in Nigeria’s environment, lack of local content, security of data, whether in storage or while being transmitted via the Internet which should be addressed in subsequent elections in Nigeria.