digital economy has maintained its pattern of contributing significantly to the expansion of the country’s economy. Nigerians have excelled in the tech sector, from blogging to the development of interactive forums like Nairaland and the establishment of e-commerce platforms like Jumia and Konga. All of these have influenced the purchasing power and strategies of the Nigerian populace and those of Africa as a whole. Nigerians have embraced technology in a variety of ways to improve their lives and greatly empower their people.
The minister was able to resolve the Right of Way issue that had prevented the widespread adoption of broadband for eleven years. Additionally, by designating telecommunications equipment as Critical National Infrastructure, the erroneous act of destroying it was also addressed. The minister also instructed the deactivation of 2.2 million SIM cards in order to address the issue of unregistered SIM cards, which have put millions of lives and properties in danger.
Nigeria’s ICT sector has influenced its inventories and given the country a place in the community of countries. With the proliferation of startup acceleration centres nationwide, including CoCreation Hub in Lagos, the IT industry has extended across the country. Every state has embraced the technological trend and provided its residents with facilities to advance their technical development. Many of these hubs are privately held, while others are supported by the Nigerian government through various federal agencies and programmes meant to develop the tech sector in the nation.
The steady and rising development of technology under the minister’s watch is no longer news to the development of Nigeria’s digital economy. Nigeria has repeatedly shown itself to be a technophile country, hence the ICT industry has consistently led as one of the nation’s fastest-growing sectors.
Numerous policies and strategies implemented by the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy have been successful in advancing both the ICT industry and the digital economy. To name a few, there are the National Broadband Plan 2020–2025, the SIM Card Registration Policy, and the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy 2020–2030, which serve as the principal policy driving Nigeria’s digital transformation.
I had the opportunity to be part of the IMPR team that presented our book to the Honourable Minister, Mallam Pantami on 22 August and had the privilege to applaud him for the Ministry’s hard work and progress since he assumed office. Interestingly, on 26 August, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) released its report which stated that the ICT sector had contributed 18.44% to the GDP in Q2 2022, clearly demonstrating the sector’s significant and consistent contributions to Nigeria’s economy.
In this regard, Mallam Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami set and broke records while successfully navigating the Ministry’s ship during the Buhari administration. He has accomplished what many people would have taken years to do.
Fom Gyem writes from Abuja.
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