The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami has tasked the board and management staff of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) to continuously engage in critical thinking to provide solutions to complex problems, for the benefit of Nigerians and humanity at large.
Pantami, who was speaking during a ministerial training on “Skills for Successful Leadership in the Fourth Industrial Revolution” organised by the ministry, said: “There is no problem that exists in the world that has no solution. Globally, there is none. The only challenge is being unable to engage in critical thinking.”
He highlighted customer-centricity, long-term thinking, passion for invention and surrounding one’s self with mentors as keys to staying relevant and impactful.
“Create the future and be the driver of it. When hiring, look for people with discipline, expertise [and] capacity to deliver and do away with sentiments,” he urged the agency.
While calling on participants not to compromise their core values, he advised that compromises attract negative results in the long run and so, it should be avoided.
Pantami took time to explain the modus operandi of managing success, failure, crisis and leadership in the workspace, adding that facts should always precede emotions.
According to the minister, leadership is about being brave and taking hardcore decisions, especially for the good of those concerned. He, however, stressed that they should be taken after a critical evaluation of the subject matter.
“As a leader, if you want to be successful don’t be worried about today; rather, be worried about the legacies you would leave behind.
“Be consistent in your determination to do the right things and have a high level of decisiveness,” the minister admonished.
The director-general of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi, who welcomed the participants, was delighted at the theme of the training which, he said, aims to equip the board and management staff of the organisation for growth and resilience in the fourth Industrial Revolution.
Abdullahi particularly appreciated Pantami for taking the initiative to share his knowledge and expertise on the knowledge-sharing initiative which he [Abdullahi] has benefitted from for 25 years.
“To seize the opportunities that abound, we need to fully equip ourselves with relevant knowledge, skills, expertise and tools to position Nigeria to create and capture value from the fourth Industrial Revolution,” Abdullahi stressed.
He hailed the minister’s leadership over the years as [being] instrumental to the successes recorded by the agency, noting that it is a golden opportunity for board members and management staff to grow faster in their service delivery, especially as they are part of the training session to be handled by the minister.
“When the minister formulated the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS), he directed us to implement and, with his guidance [we have done so]. The force-set, mindset and skill-set, as well as the look and feel of the agency are [products of] his initiatives.”
The director-general encouraged everyone to fully participate in the different sessions as he hoped that the training would transform their lives and, by extension, impact their performance at work and the digital economy of the nation at large.
The event featured a presentation of the Icon of Digital Economy Award to Prof. Pantami by the board chairman of NITDA, Dr. Sa’id Abubakar in recognition of his immense contributions to the sector.
Meanwhile, a symbolic certificate was also presented to Abubakar.