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NITDA Engages Foreign, Local Partners On Digital Acceleration Programmes For Nigerian Startups

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Abdullahi Naidoo
Abdullahi Naidoo

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is currently engaging foreign partners on digital inclusiveness to accelerate the development of a digital economy for Nigerians.

The NITDA director-general, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi made this known during a virtual session with Cisco’s country digital acceleration lead for Africa, Clayton Naidoo.

Abdullahi stressed that the agency is leaving no stone unturned in the implementation processes of its Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan (SRAP 2021-2024).

He said that NITDA has continued to collaborate with CISCO since 2019 when a MoU was signed, to build an incubation centre that will foster digital skills and job creation for Nigerian citizens. 

Saddled with the task of leveraging on the opportunities available to startups in facilitating collaboration with CISCO, the NITDA director-general led some members of his team to the Sharp Sharp Startup Company, one of the winners of the 2022 Gulf International Technology Exhibition (GITEX) in Dubai, on a facility tour to facilitate collaboration between the startup and CISCO.  

CISCO is a global leader in technology that powers the Internet, with a focus on networking, collaboration solutions, security solutions, wireless and mobility, data centre, IoT, video, analytics and software solutions. Partnership and collaboration with stakeholders, throughout the value chain and across the industry, allow NITDA to multiply its efforts and scale impact.

NITDA Facility tour
The director-general, National Information Technology Development Agency, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi (second) from left addressing agency officials and innovators during the facility tour.

In similar vein, the NITDA boss, in the company of Dr. Yau Garba, the coordinator of the National Center for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (NCAIR) – a subsidiary of NITDA – also embarked on a facility tour of the Uniccon Group of Companies Ltd, the startup that built ’Omeife’ the first African robot. 

The NITDA boss recounted that during the unveiling of ‘Omeife’ last December to vice-president, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo and the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami, had encouraged NITDA to work with Uniccon Group to commercialise the robot.

“We are willing to sign an MoU with Unicorn to infuse ‘Omeife’ into our already established learning models if it can communicate in four identified Nigerian languages, namely Igbo, Hausa, Yoruba and Pidgin, towards achieving 95 per cent digital literacy in Nigeria by 2030. This will, in turn, enable citizens to employ digital devices for economic purposes,” he added.

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