NITDA Bill: Nigerian Legislators Can't Be Fooled, Says Abba

NITDA Bill: Nigerian Legislators Can't Be Fooled, Says Abba

  • Nigerian legislators have been urged to ignore the campaign against the National Information Technology Development (NITDA) bill
  • Hannatu Sulaiman Abba of the Arewa Agenda for Sustainable Development, says recent media campaign against the bill is in bad taste
  • She stated that NITDA is best suited to implement the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy through the bill

FCT, Abuja - Hannatu Sulaiman Abba, a member of Arewa Agenda for Sustainable Development, has stated that attempts to fool Nigerian legislators to reject the National Information Technology Development (NITDA) bill will fail.

Abba was reacting an article written by Dr Abubakar Alkali, who she accused of ridiculing the contents of the 2021 bill that seek to repeal NITDA in order to realign its mandate with current realities in cyber and technology space.

Inuwa
Abba says the Inuwa-led NITDA is best suited to implement the next stage of Nigeria's digital evolution. Photo credit: @NITDANigeria
Source: Facebook

She accused the writer of “attempting to gull Nigerians with rumours and flat out lies..”

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She stated in a rejoinder sent to Legit.ng:

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“In the disjointed opinion, one could suspect that he might have allowed himself to be used as a launching pad for a series of malicious media assaults targeted at clogging the wheels of the Digital Economy Policy and Strategy for Nigeria.
“Without mentioning names, the writer refers to the mandates of the minister of communication and digital economy, Prof Isa Pantami, the Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Danbatta and the Director General of NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa.
“While there is nothing wrong for a son of the north to criticise his northern brethren constructively, Alkali merely sacrificed academic finesse and intellectualism on the altar of crumbs to attack others with his reckless insinuations and innuendos.
“His piece seeks to portray NITDA, despite its tremendous work with meagre resources, as undeserving of a mandate simply because it was cast in a 2001 cum 2007 Act.

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“He tried to deceive the people into believing that the NCC, the telecommunications industry regulator, is better suited to drive Digital Economic visions, not NITDA, an Information and Communication Technology (ICT) parastatal.”

She noted that since its establishment, NITDA has provided the legal framework for IT and pioneered development projects in areas of capacity building, provision of access to IT, goods and services, as well as job creation and national security.

She added:

“On October 23, 2019, President Muhammadu Buhari approved the re-designation of the ministry of communications as ministry of communications and digital economy. The primary purpose of the re-designation was to create a policy organ that would oversee the development of the digital economy.
“The ministry has developed Digital Economy Policy and Strategy which focuses on the development of the digital aspects of the economy thus creating the need for a review of the regulatory framework.
“The Nigerian National Policy on Information Technology was approved in 2001 to make Nigeria an IT capable country by 2005. Going by Alkali’s logic, a supervising ministry upgrades in mission, vision and mandate, but its implementing arm must remain in the woods?

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“The National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy has a new vision of making Nigeria a leading global digital economy. The current mandate of NITDA focuses on the vision of the initial IT policy.
“NITDA needs a new mandate to refocus its regulatory and developmental mandate for competitiveness in the 12 trillion dollar global digital economy. This is what some are up in arms against.
“Nobody should deceive us, the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy requires a more robust approach to regulations, standards setting, and guidelines development, with a focus on digital and emerging technologies, and NITDA is best suited to implement this mandate.
“I am very sure the legislators at the National Assembly are too wise to be fooled by the conjectures of those trying to confuse Nigerians with their weak missiles.”

Prof Pantami unveils book titled: "Skills Rather Than Just Degrees"

Meanwhile, Professor Pantami has authored another book on skill acquisitions.

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The minister, who recently released books on ‘Cybersecurity Initiatives for Securing a Country’ and 'Datafication of Society to Foster an Internet Economy’ unveiled 'Skills Rather Than Just Degrees' in Abuja in November 2022.

The research work focuses on the importance of skills and its potential impact in addressing the problems of unemployment and underemployment.

Pantami hails author for documenting contemporary issues in Nigeria

Similarly, Professor Pantami has hailed Hashim Suleiman, the author of "Big Opinion", a new book on contemporary issues in Nigeria.

Pantami was represented at the unveiling in Abuja by Dr. Idris Yelwa, a director at the National Information Technology Development Agency.

The minister pointed out that books play a key role in fostering leadership, development, creativity and innovation.

Source: Legit.ng

Authors:
Jerrywright Ukwu avatar

Jerrywright Ukwu Jerrywright Ukwu is an Abuja-based senior political/defence correspondent. He is a graduate of the Nigerian Institute of Journalism, Lagos and the International Institute of Journalism in Abuja. He is also a member of the Nigeria Union of Journalists. He spends his leisure-time reading history books. He can be reached via email at jerrywright39@yahoo.com.

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