The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami, has tasked the newly created Nigeria Data Protection Bureau (NDPB) to ensure data protection in the country by coordinating all the existing laws that affect data protection, data privacy and data confidentiality.
Speaking during the official launch of the NDPB logo, website and core values, today (April 5, 2022) in Abuja, Pantami underscored the importance of data protection laws and infrastructure around the globe, saying no investor would invest in any country that cannot guarantee the privacy and confidentiality of its data.
The minister pointed out that Nigeria has fragments of existing data protection, privacy and confidentiality in various agencies, even as he tasked the new bureau to harmonise them, adding that data protection should not only be centred within the public sectors but should also cut across the private sectors.
“[In the] NIMC Act, 2007, under Section 26, there is a form of data protection in which nobody is allowed to get access to NIMC’s database without the approval of the commission. In NITDA Act 2007, Section 6 under articles J and K, there is a form of data protection under article A to come up with the legislation in the first place.
“It is now in the process of being integrated into full-fledged legislation by the National Assembly. Under the Nigerian Communications Commission Act 2003, there was no mention of data protection.
“The commission came up with two subsidiary legislations, in which operators are not allowed to get access or release certain information without the consent of data subject.
“[In the] National Health Act of 2014, there is a form of data protection and many more,” he explained.
Earlier in his remarks, the NDPB national commissioner, Dr. Vincent Olatunji, highlighted that the mandate of data protection had a strategic roadmap that would provide the turning point in Nigeria’s data privacy, even as he urged stakeholders to give the brand the needed support to achieve its mandate.
In his goodwill message, the executive commissioner, stakeholder management, NCC, Mr. Adeleke Adewolu, congratulated the bureau and pledged the support of the commission.