The NIMC boss said the provision of digital identity to everyone in the country is “critical to accessing services physically or electronically.”
The Director-General of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Engr. Aliyu Aziz, has identified seven key conditions necessary to unlock opportunities and potentials in Nigeria’s digital market.
In a paper he presented at the just concluded eNigeria conference, Engr. Aziz stated that Nigeria must establish the right regulatory and industry policies to encourage infrastructure investment in digital infrastructure such as communications networks (broadband, mobile telecoms, Internet, online e-government and services) and smart cities.
According to him, the government must create a stable, predictable and sustainable policy/commercial environment that allows businesses to flourish a step that will help in unlocking the country’s digital market thereby allowing the economy to grow.
Although Nigeria’s population currently at almost 200 million, presents a huge potential, Aziz argues that government needs to put in place focused programmes to stimulate demand for digital solutions through the promotion of digital skills, digital local content and support for local digital applications for the opportunities to be fully harnessed.
Speaking further, he said government needs to encourage and implement digital services across
all sectors of the economy, and establish economy platforms such as ecommerce, online markets, and entrepreneurship ecosystem thereby encourage tech-enabled businesses to turn creativity into value-creating online businesses.
His words: “We must introduce digital literacy in our school curriculum (primary, secondary, etc.) as this will bring about digital skill critical for digital interaction.”
Over all, the NIMC boss said the provision of digital identity to everyone in the country, thereby proving who is who, is “critical to accessing services physically or electronically.”
Stressing on identification, which is the main responsibility and mandate of NIMC, Aziz reminded the audience that one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) the United Nations set out as blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all, demands that nations provide legal identity for all including birth registration by the year 2030.
“From the above, it is very clear that identification plays an important role in enabling the achievement of other SDG targets, such as social protection, rights to economic resources, land and property as well as universal health coverage,” he stated.