NITDA, SON Form Alliance On Regulation Of IT Standards

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L-R: The director-general, National Information Technology Development Agency, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi presenting a copy of NITDA’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan to the director-general, Standard Organization of Nigeria, Malam Faruq Salim when he paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Abuja.

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) and the Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON) are set to form an alliance for the enforcement of Information Technology (IT) standards in Nigeria.

Speaking when he received the SON director-general, Malam Faruq Salim in his office in Abuja, the director-general of NITDA, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi, underscored the need for mutual understanding in the area of developing standards, capacity building and certification in IT sector which is a mini set of the national standard of SON.

He pointed out that the cooperation between the two bodies was important because the NITDA Act 2007 states that the agency is to work with SON to develop standards, adding the development of standards is captured under the developmental regulations pillar of NITDA’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan (SRAP 2020-2024). 

“Our understanding of regulation is to help the service provider and protect the consumer, not stiffen innovation or to be an obstacle to businesses,” he said.

Abdullahi stressed the importance of a close collaboration between both agencies to explore possible areas of trainings in order to exchange knowledge and ideas, adding both agencies could benefit from each other’s wealth of knowledge, experience, and expertise. 

“As an agency whose first core value is people-first, we are trying to be customer-centric. Therefore, cooperation is key in whatever we do,” he pointed out.

Earlier, Salim said the courtesy call was to map out a path for NITDA and SON in developing standards and complementing each other where necessary.

“Hopefully, the two organizations can cooperate in our management system trainings and certifications, as well as in our standards writing, and enforcements, because we have the teeth by law to help you enforce the law where your hands are tied,” he said.

Similarly, NITDA’s acting director, standards, guidelines and frameworks (SGF), Mr. Olawunmi Oladejo, brought to the fore the rule making process (RMP) of NITDA which he said was strictly followed “as it clearly states that stakeholders must be carried along in the development of any standards, guidelines, frameworks, and regulations.”

A statement signed by NITDA’s head, corporate affairs and external relations, Mrs. Hadiza Umar, said the directors-general agreed on the need to develop a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the organizations to cement the evolving relationship.

Consequently, a three-man committee selected from the two organisations that would work out the modalities for engagement and collaboration was also inaugurated, the statement added.

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