The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has held discussion on the need for states to encourage Information and Communication Technology (ICT) investment drive, digital innovation and local content development in the digital ecosystem in the North-Easthern geo-political zone of Nigeria.
This was the fulcrum of stakeholders’ discussion at the Emerging Tech Research & Innovation Forum organised by the Commission at the Library Auditorium, American University of Nigeria, (AUN), Yola, Adamawa, where five governors from Adamawa, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe from the geo-political zone were duly represented.
The two-day forum with the Theme: “Developing Nigeria’s Tech Ecosystem: Imperative for Improving Local Content”, which started on Wednesday, October 30, 2019, brought together key players in the ICT value chain to deliberate and suggest policy directions, regulatory frameworks and strategies to further facilitate innovation, stimulate market growth and create value in the industry in the geo-political zone.
Speaking at the forum, Prof. Umar Danbatta, the Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, said ICT leads as the new engine of economic growth which must be taken very seriously to drive development in the region, stressing that the northern states needed to embrace ICT investment drive in a bid to fulfil President Muhammadu Buhari’s ICT development drive.
Represented by Chidi Diugwu, Deputy Director New Media and Information Security, Danbatta maintained that ICT adoption drive, which has become the new economic model for the country, will continue to shape the future of global economies, underscoring the need for states in Nigeria to key into the new economic order.
According to Danbatta, the forum has been designed to advance NCC’s agenda of promoting ICT innovation, tech entrepreneurship and facilitate local development while leveraging on the power of digital technology to position Nigeria’s 21st century digital revolution.
“This forum is in continuation of the Commission’s nationwide support scheme for adoption of tech ecosystem for local content growth and the nation’s economic landscape,” Danbatta said.
In his address, Ubale Maska, the Executive Commissioner, Technical Services, who was represented by Ephraim Nwokonneya, Director, Research and Development, said “we must all support Mr. President’s Next Level Agenda of lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next 10 years through the adoption of emerging technology trends across local economic fronts in all states of the federation.”
The forum featured two panel discussions on “innovation hubs as the fulcrum of local content development, digital inclusion and wealth creation, employment and national economic development” and “legislative and government support for enhancing tech ecosystem in Nigeria.”