Sanwo-Olu Urges NITDA To Create Ecosystem For Businesses

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L-R: The director-general of NITDA, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi presenting a copy of the agency’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan 2021 – 2024 to the Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu when he paid a courtesy call on him at the Lagos Government House.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State has called on the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) to create an ecosystem where businesses and processes can stand the test of time.

The governor made the call when he received the director-general of NITDA, Mallam Kashifu Abdullahi, who led the management team of the agency on a courtesy visit to him at the Lagos Government House.

“I know NITDA and what NITDA has been doing, you have some intellectual-l driven people and I urge you to ensure that we create an ecosystem where businesses and processes are enduring to stand the test of time,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu commended NITDA for the revolutionary work being done to develop the digital economy, saying the agency was supporting both the public and private sectors to grow, to rewrite the narratives to rid lack of trust, truth and sincerity in the country.

He also reeled out some smart projects the state is embarking on for it to leapfrog from three industrial revolution into the fourth. He identified the proposed building of the biggest technology hub in Yaba, the establishment of Science, Research Innovation Council in Lagos, the Unified Fibre Duct project, the N250 million grant given to startups in 2020, the free wifi for public schools and institutions among many projects.

Earlier in his remarks, Abdullahi charged the Lagos State government to align its Information Technology programmes to NITDA’s  recently unveiled Strategic Road Map and Action Plan, 2021-2024 because of the enormous potentials inherent in it.

Abdullahi disclosed that the 2021-2024 strategic roadmap and action plans was positioned on seven pedestal that can help to unlock the digital economy potentials of the state.

“Our Strategic Roadmap and Action Plans 2021-2024 was carefully crafted to unleash your (Lagos State) digital capability. The plan is anchored on seven pillars that can be a source of inspiration for you to invest more in making Lagos the centre of digital excellence,” he pointed out.   

He listed the seven pillars to form the SRAP as developmental regulations, digital literacy and skills, digital transformation, digital innovation and entrepreneurship, cyber security, emerging technologies and promotion of indigenous contents and called for the constitution of a team of both the agency and Lagos State government that would work out modalities for “possible areas of cooperation and supports” the agency could offer to the state for it to “continue on its march to greatness.”

Abdullahi also requested that the state should host the proposed Nigerian Data Protection Regulation, (NDPR) toolkit for health sector, saying the appeal was anchored on its (Lagos) experience in implementation, adding the workshop would provide the requisite tools to the digital transformation of the health sector.

While acknowledging the status of Lagos as the largest startups ecosystem in Africa with over 400 startups valued at 2 billion USD, the DG advised the state government to create enabling environment, issue appropriate regulations and execute the right programmes that would facilitate the emergence of the state as the African digital economy hub.

He pointed out that various initiatives of NITDA had helped the state and its residents to generate several billions because the state hosts 90 per cent of indigenous software developers, ICT hardware manufactures and consultancy service providers.

“I can proudly say that Lagos State benefits the most from the data protection regulation in terms of compliance and revenue generation. It would be amazing to know that out of the estimated N5.2 billion revenue generated by the data protection compliance organisations, Lagos-based DPCOs have captured over N4.5 billion representing over 86 per cent of total revenue generated in the data protection industry,” he added. 

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