Monday, July 4, 2022

NITDA To Draw Guidelines For IT Contracts In MDAs

The director-general, National Information Technology Development Agency, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi.
The director-general, National Information Technology Development Agency, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi.

The director-general of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi, has revealed that guidelines are underway for the introduction of Service Level Agreement (SLA) into information technology contracts across the ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) of government to reduce wastages in government spending.

Speaking during a workshop on the drafting of SLA in IT contracts for MDAs today (April 5,2022) in Abuja, he explained that the workshop was organised to develop the culture of compliance with SLA in government contracts.

The NITDA boss underscored the need for participants who are majorly lawyers and IT officers from various MDAS to enhance service delivery.

“As earlier mentioned, during our previous engagement with heads of finance departments and procurement officers, NITDA has developed a guideline for the introduction of SLA into government information technology contracts. 

“We intend to get you familiarised with the guidelines today through our experienced resource persons in furtherance of our goal to improve compliance to better service delivery in the sector.

“We are here to understand and agree on how to draft standard SLAs, to ensure the provision of adequate warranty, after-sales service agreements on our IT products and services and adequate provisions for downtime, and after-sales support. We have here today lawyers from various MDAS, who are draftsmen for contract agreements and IT officers as well. 

“This workshop seeks to practically elaborate on how to draft SLAs in government contracts for IT products and services. This, we believe, will help achieve our goal of developing the culture of the use and compliance with SLA in government IT contracts.

“NITDA, under its mandate of regulation of the IT sector in Nigeria and furtherance of one of its seven strategic pillars of developmental regulation, is always seeking to ensure the efficient and effective delivery of IT products and services,” he said.

Represented by the acting director, corporate planning and strategy, Abdullahi further noted that given the significant role the IT sector has played in lifting Nigeria’s economy out of recession in recent times, it has become imperative to improve service delivery and protect consumers in the sector.

“With the ICT sector recording the highest growth rate in the 4th Quarter of 2020 (14.70 per cent), as reported by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and stated by President Buhari.

“With the growth rate in the IT sector being the only double-digit growth rate and exceeding the aggregate growth rates of all the 2nd to the 7th fastest growing sectors and the ICT sector also having the highest growth rate in the year 2020 and the 1st Quarter of 2021, you will agree with us that there is indeed need to protect consumers in the sector,” he added.

In his remarks, one of the workshop facilitators, Chukwuemeka Augustine, said the workshop was designed to train participants who are draftsmen for contract agreements to reduce wastages and cheating of government by service providers.

Augustine stressed the need for participants to get themselves acquainted with SLA to ensure that government has value for money.

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