NITDA, NCDMB Partner To Promote IT Local Content Production

TECH DIGEST – The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), has shown its readiness to partner with the Nigeria Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB), on the promotion of indigenous IT products and services.
The NITDA Director-General, Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, CCIE disclosed this during a virtual meeting with the Executive Secretary of NCDMB.
Mallam Abdullahi affirmed that the Agency and NCDMB have so many potential areas of collaboration ranging from the establishment of information Technology (IT) innovation and incubations hub in strategic locations across the country.
According to him, IT Hubs are a platform where Technology, Business, Innovation and Entrepreneurship are nurtured by building pools of both native and evolving talents and footloose IT professionals.
He added that the use of IT Hubs has created lots of job opportunities. In order to record the number of jobs the Agency has created through IT, NITDA will partner with NCDMB to create a monitoring and evaluation portal.
We can partner and develop a monitoring and evaluation portal that can help us get the visibility of the number of people we have trained. Monitor their progress and have a figure we can present to the government of our contribution in terms of job creation, which is in line with Mr President’s promise to help lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty.
Abdullahi stressed that the development of Software and applications is key to the IT growth and development in the nation because the pandemic has shown the need to build the country’s capacity in terms of software development. We have some challenges in the software eco-development system which we will like to work together to create a structure, which will address these challenges, and also help the growth of the IT industry.
He further stated that the Agency during the lockdown has organized an innovation challenge, with the aim of identifying solutions that can help curtail the spread of the virus, when the pandemic was at its peak time.
During the innovation challenge, three (3) winners emerged and were awarded and funded to develop a working product and services. The first winner developed a Ventilator which is undergoing testing now; the second winner developed a smart decontamination chamber where it can be put at the entrance of a building. It has been fine tuned at the moment and the third winner developed an app called my clinic.ng. It is an online platform where patients can be attended to without going to the hospital.
Reaffirming the importance of the Virtual meetings stated earlier by the Executive Secretary of NCDMB, he (DG) stated that it has helped the Agency to conceptualize and execute groundbreaking initiatives during the lockdown period. “During the lockdown, we came up with the NITDA Virtual Academy, which, as we speak now, have more than 26,000 Nigerians learning on the platform”. He said.

Abdullahi added that the Agency is thinking of doing more innovation challenge to identify affordable and more suitable virtual platforms for Nigeria.

“Even if we overcome the pandemic, the virtual meeting has come to stay because of its flexibility and how easy it is to collaborate and work together,” he added.

Earlier, the Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Engr. Simbi Wabote said that the Board decided to partner with NITDA to advance the ICT support the board has rendered to the Nation.

He stated that the board has supported Local ICT companies, procure locally assembled PCs and, utilize MainOne for internet services, use in-house staff developed services and applications, trained a thousand youth and also established ICT centres in secondary schools in the six geographical zones of the country.

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