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CISCO SEEKS PARTNERSHIPS WITH NIGERIA’s DIGITAL ECONOMY, COMMENDS PANTAMI’s DIGITAL VISION
Super User Written by July 13, 2021

The leadership of Cisco Africa Team today, Tuesday 13th July 2021, expressed the organisation’s willingness to partner with the country’s Digital Economy sector in order to further drive the vision of the Federal Government in the digitalisation process. This gesture is as a result of the giant strides recorded by the sector under the leadership of the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami.
Speaking at a virtual meeting initiated by Cisco, the Senior Vice President, Public Policy and Governmental Affairs for Europe, Middle East, Africa and Russia, Ms Pastora Valero, while commending Dr Pantami on what she described as his unprecedented legacies in the Nigerian Economy in establishing a burgeoning digital sector that has caught global attention, urged the Minister to consider avenues of partnerships and collaborations with Cisco. “We have keenly followed your progress and would very much like to be a part of your vision in driving the sector and are open to partnerships in that regard.”
In her remarks, the Senior Director Policy and Governmental Affairs, Africa, Charmaine Houvet said “Pantami’s policies were in line with global trends and the potential for development in Nigeria cannot be ignored. The leadership that the Honourable Minister has brought to bear in the sector is highly commendable and Cisco is willing to be a part of this journey.”
In his response, Dr Pantami remarked that “we are championing a paradigm shift in the country leveraging on technology to give preference and priority to proven skills over paper qualifications. Particularly, digital skills”. He drew the team’s attention to the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) Document particularly, pillars two and seven, centred around digital literacy and skills and digital societies and emerging technologies, with the objective of capacity building through digital skills acquisition.
Pantami identified the need for partnership in the areas of training and urged Cisco to “establish training academies across Nigeria, especially in underserved areas in order to empower citizens with the requisite skills required to maintain global relevance”.
The Honourable Minister in response to Cisco’s prayers, immediately set up a technical team to draw up a Memorandum of Understanding in that regard.


Uwa Suleiman (Mrs)
Spokesperson to the Honourable Minister of Communications & Digital Economy.
13th July 2021

Super User Written by July 06, 2021
The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), PhD, FNCS, FBCS, FIIM, today virtually Launched and Unveiled STORM; A Fibre connectivity and Digital Services platform, which is powered by Galaxy Backbone, for the South-East and South-South region of the country.
The launch is part of the implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy for a Digital Nigeria (NDEPS), and also the National Broadband Plan 2020 – 2025. Both National policies were launched and unveiled by his Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR.
The third pillar of the NDEPS (Solid Infrastructure) focuses on providing Internet Connectivity and Data Centres.
In his remarks as Chief Host and Special Guest of Honour, the Honourable Minister, Dr Pantami challenged the beneficiary states to make proper use of the service provided to them in order to drive economic development.
The Honourable Minister informed that STORM provides a platform to deliver fast and efficient internet and hosting services.
Dr Pantami reiterated the importance of Broadband Penetration, stressing that, Broadband is key to economic development and an enabler that will support other sectors of the economy.
The Minister informed that an increase in Broadband Penetration also brings about a corresponding increase in GDP. “The last two-quarter report released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) collaborates this fact”, Pantami said.
Pantami commended the corporation between Galaxy Backbone and Interra Network, asserting that digitalization cannot be achieved in silos, but only through partnership and collaboration.
 
 
Source: Mr Yusuf Abubakar, Personal Assistant (New Media) to The Honourable Minister
PANTAMI WINS MOST OUTSTANDING MINISTER OF THE YEAR AWARD
Super User Written by June 22, 2021

  Barely 4 days ago, His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR commended the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami for the great strides and landmark achievements of the digital economy sector under his supervision.
Similarly, this position of Mr President was upheld today as the Honourable Minister, Dr Pantami bagged the MOST OUTSTANDING MINISTER OF THE YEAR 2021 AWARD presented by Elite Exclusive magazine, a media giant. The Minister was singled out for this honour based on an online poll conducted by the medium.
The Award according to the magazine was in recognition of the exceptional role the minister is playing in sustaining ICT exponential growth, digitization of Nigeria's emerging economy and also positioning Nigeria’s digital economy sector on the path of sustainable National Development.
It is on record that under the reign of Dr Pantami, the ICT sector has the highest growth rate in Nigeria. According to the Q4 2020 Report of the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the ICT sector contributed an unprecedented 14.70% to GDP.
Furthermore, under the leadership of Dr Pantami, Nigeria reverberated its place as the giant of Africa and leaders in innovation. The Nigeria Data Protection Regulation and the NIN SIM Verification exercise is understudied and implemented by most African countries. Nigeria emerged as the Chairman, West African Telecommunications Regulators Assembly (WATRA) unanimously during the 18th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Assembly held on Thursday, March 11th, 2021.
Smart agriculture, Smart education, ICT Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Indigenous content development are giving a top priority under the leadership of Dr Pantami, in line with the vision of His Excellency, President Buhari to produce what we need and consume what we produce.
Equally, Broadband penetration in Nigeria hit an unprecedented 45.07%, the 2013 resolution of the National Economic Council on a uniform levy for Right of Way is been honoured 7 years after the consensus decision was reached. This among other factors has brought about a significant drop in the cost of data.
Within a space of 1 year, Dr Pantami has commissioned over 55 digital economy projects that spread across all the 36 states of Nigeria. Notable among them include; National Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, Abuja, ICT Innovation and Incubation Centre, University of Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Emergency Communication Centre, Imo, Owerri State, ATBU ICT Innovation Hub, Bauchi, Bauchi State, and the Digital Economy Centre, Ekiti State.
In the words of the Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma, "On Wednesday, 21st of August, 2019, when he was sworn in as the minister to oversee the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy. Some of us who followed his activities as the Director-General, National Information Technology and Development Agency was convinced that you were going to lift the ministry from where they were to the next level. Knowing you as a thinker, a man that's full of ideas, and a man under whose leadership National Information Technology Agency came up prominently to the fore”.
On the path of Borno State Governor, Babagana Umara Zulum “Honestly speaking not because the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy is here with us, the activities of the ministry was not well known to Nigerians before his appointment as a minister to pilot the affairs of the Ministry. We have applauded his competency in handling the affairs of the ministry. He gingered the performance in his ministry making it possible to achieve a lot during a short stay in office.

 

Source: Mr Yusuf Abubakar, Personal Assistant (New Media) to The Honourable Minister

PANTAMI BAGS PRESTIGIOUS DIGITAL ECONOMY DRIVER AWARD
Super User Written by June 17, 2021

The effort of positioning Nigeria’s digital economy sector on the path of sustainable development has once more been brought to the spotlight as the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, FNCS, FBCS, FIIM, was conferred with the Digital Economy Driver Award.

The accolade was given by the National Body of Nigeria Information Technology Reporters Association (NITRA) to the Minister at his office during a familiarization visit to introduce its new exco on Wednesday, 16th of June 2021. According to NITRA, the Award was in recognition of the Honourable Minister’s efforts in the formulation and implementation of policies to accelerate the digitization of the Nigerian economy.

These efforts led to an ICT sector that had the highest growth rate in the 4th Quarter of 2020, at 14.70%, as attested to by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in its Q4 2020 Report.  It also led to an increase in broadband penetration to an unprecedented 45.07%, as well as a significant drop in the cost of data.

The Association also acknowledged how the Honourable Minister has given priority to inclusive digital literacy and skills programmes to empower unemployed youths, artisans, women, Persons Living with Disabilities, Public Servants, Farmers, and Community Leaders, among others.

The body noted that they have been following the activities of the Minister and acknowledge the significant transformation in Nigeria’s digital economy landscape as a result of these.  “We appreciate all that you have been doing since your appointment, the digital economy sector has witnessed tremendous success and growth under your stewardship,” the body said.

The NITRA team also commended the Minister for coming up with many people-oriented developmental policies and overseeing their implementation. The body praised the Minister for the ongoing NIN-SIM verification process and identified it as an exercise of great National importance which will accelerate economic National development.

Dr Femi Adeluyi

Technical Assistant (Information Technology) to the

Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy

17th of June, 2021

 

 

 

 

 

BITRUS NABASU ASSUMES OFFICE AS PERMANENT SECRETARY, MINISTRY OF COMMUNICATIONS AND DIGITAL ECONOMY
Super User Written by August 12, 2021
Bitrus Nabasu assumes office as Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.
Mr. Bitrus Bako Nabasu, FCNA, FCTI, mni has assumed office as Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.
He replaces the retired Perm Sec, Engr Festus Yusufu Daudu who has left having completed the mandatory 35 years in the Civil Service of the Federation.
On assumption of office on the 9th August, 2021, he thanked the Staff and the Director overseeing the office of the Perm sec for the warm reception accorded him and his entourage from the Ministry of Petroleum Resources. He said it is “an honour which he will cherish for long”.
Mr. Nabasu did not mince words in appreciating his predecessor Engr. Daudu’s cordial relationship he built with members of Staff of the Ministry which had propelled him to make significant impact despite his short stay in the Ministry.
The Permanent Secretary, while promising to build on the legacy of Engr. Daudu noted and appreciated the fact that he has come to work with people who are receptive, cooperative and willing to work and who know what is right from what is wrong. He noted “I feel honour to work with such Calibre of persons” and he passionately appealed to the Staff to ‘double’ the support his predecessor enjoyed to him so that the Ministry can achieve its mandate.
He further stated that he was in the Ministry to coordinate its activities as he said “give me that support, give me that cooperation and I will coordinate very well and without coordination there can never be management. So give me that cooperation to coordinate the activities of the Ministry very well in order to deliver on the mandate of the Hon. Minister”.
According to him, “I want to assure you that you cannot work effectively without a conducive environment. As such, I want to assure you that such environment will be provided”.
The Perm Sec acknowledged the determination and commitment of the Hon. Minister, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami) in achieving the mandate of the Ministry towards the realization of the dividends of democracy of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration. Hear him “the Hon. Minister is very passionate in achieving the mandate of the Ministry, therefore, let’s work together with him in a secured environment in order to achieve our mandate”.
He urged the Directors to ensure that the Digital Economy sector stay ‘alive’ noting that it was not a mistake that ‘Digital Economy’ was added to Communications by Mr. President. He said “anywhere you go now nationally and internationally it is all about ‘digitalization’ of the economy. “During the COVID-19, nobody knew that we could work from the comfort of our homes, but technology provided and still providing that platform, he added”.
He encouraged the Staff to work assiduously to ensure that the digital economy sector succeed saying that most nations of the world are now diversifying their economy from the oil and gas and that Nigeria cannot afford to be left behind in this era.
He appreciated the love shown to him by the Staff of Ministry of Petroleum Resources for accompanying him. He thanked them for their support.
Speaking earlier, the Director, Planning, Research and Statistics, Director overseeing the office of the Permanent Secretary, Dr. (Mrs.) Nonye Nwachukwu who received the New Perm Sec and his entourage on arrival eulogized the Perm Sec for his good work in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources where he was deplored from to the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.
Dr. Nwachukwu noted that all the Directorate Cadre Staff and other Staff of the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy are hard working people who are committed and dedicated to their work and will support the incoming Perm Sec to succeed in his new assignment.
 
 
Philomena Abiamuwe –Mowete
DD/Head (Information/PRs)
9/08/2021.
PANTAMI BAGS PRESTIGIOUS MINISTER OF THE YEAR AWARD
Super User Written by June 05, 2021

The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, FNCS, FBCS, FIIM, was recently honoured with the prestigious 2020 Minister of the Year Award.  The award was coordinated by the Blueprint Newspaper at a ceremony that took place at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel on Thursday, 3rd June 2021.

Dr Pantami came top in the keenly contested award at the Blueprint Newspapers’ 10th year anniversary and 2020 Impact Series/Awards.  He was selected as the winner based on his major achievements in the three major priority areas of the government - Economy, Transparency and Security, and the excellence with which he carried out his task of leading the Communications and Digital Economy sector. 

According to the coordinators of the Award, Dr Pantami stood out as a result of the significant role the ICT sector played in lifting Nigeria out of recession, the rapid development of the digital economy sector under his watch, his exemplary leadership and synergy among the Ministry’s parastatals, to mention but a few.  The ICT was the the fastest growing sector in 2020 and its 14.70% growth rate in the 4th Quarter of 2020 played a key role in enabling the Nigerian economy exit recession. A total of 23 Emergency Communication Centres were commissioned under his watch and 12 more are almost ready for commissioning.  Over 300 centres were also established to support the growth of the digital economy.

The Awards were graced by the President of the Senate and other leading members of the society.  It had a number of high profile recipients like a former President and some serving governors, who were conferred with awards in various categories for some accomplishments in different endeavours.

The organisers noted that the event was "organised to honour key political actors, individuals and heads of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) who have proved their worth in specific areas of governance such as education, urban renewal and rural infrastructure and the ease of doing business, among others".

The Honourable Minister thanked the organisers for recognising his modest achievements in the Communications and Digital Economy sector.  He also stated that he strongly believes that the Award will further energize he and his team to contribute meaningfully in the service of the country.


Dr Femi Adeluyi
Technical Assistant (Information Technology) to the
Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy
5th of June, 2021

Super User Written by May 21, 2021
The attention of the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, FNCS, FBCS, FIIM, has been brought to the updated Privacy Policy of the WhatsApp messaging application.
The Policy states that WhatsApp will share information about the users on their platform with their parent company (Facebook), as well as other Facebook companies. The information includes user phone numbers, “transaction data, service-related information, information on how you interact with others (including businesses) when using our Services, mobile device information, your IP address”. Furthermore, WhatsApp has indicated that users who refuse to accept their revised privacy policy risk not being able to use the service at all.
The Federal Government released the Nigeria Data Protection Regulations (NDPR) in 2019 and is committed to upholding the data privacy of Nigerians. We are also aware that the European region is exempt from the provisions of the updated Policy and it is also being challenged in a number of countries. The Honourable Minister has therefore directed the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), as the Regulator of the Information Technology sector, to engage vigorously with Facebook to understand the processes, level of security, etc of the data of Nigerian users in order to ensure that Policies proposed for Nigeria strictly adhere to the provisions of NDPR.
Nigerians can be assured that the Federal Government will give uttermost attention to the privacy of their data, in line with the NDPR and the National Digital Economy Policy for a Digital Nigeria.
 
 
Dr Femi Adeluyi
Technical Assistant (Information Technology) to the
Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy
21st May, 2021
Super User Written by May 18, 2021

The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, FNCS, FBCS, FIIM, chaired a Stakeholders Meeting to review the Rule Making Process and New Regulations for the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST).

The meeting took place on Thursday, 11th of March, 2021 and key stakeholders that participated at the meeting included the Chair, Senate Committee on Telecommunications (represented by the Vice Chair), the Chair, House Committee on Telecommunications, the Chairman of NIPOST, the Postmaster General and CEO of NIPOST, DG/CEO of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), DG/CEO of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC),  the Managing Director/CEO of Galaxy Backbone Ltd, the Director-General/CEO of the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) and Director-General/CEO of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN).

Others at the meeting included the representatives of the Inspector-General of Police, Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and Comptroller-General of Nigeria Customs Service.  Others were the Association of Nigeria Courier Operators (ANCO), Nigeria International Air Courier Association (NIACA), Mail Route Partners, and operators such as UPS, Fedex, Courier Plus Services, RedStar and DHL. Wider stakeholder engagement was also conducted as the regulations were been developed.

A vibrant postal service requires the issuance of regulations, standards, guidelines from time to time to guide actions and provide needed clarity for stakeholders. Section 62 of the Nigerian Postal Service Act 1992 empowers the Minister in charge of NIPOST to make regulations that give effect to the provisions of the NIPOST Act. We are in the process of separating Regulations from Operations.

The Rulemaking Process Regulation of NIPOST was issued to activate the regulatory function of NIPOST. The document aims at ensuring an inclusive, stakeholder-led process that takes advantage of the diversity and capacity of Nigerians in various walks of life in order to make the most efficient and value-adding decisions that engender sustainable growth in the sector.

The Courier and Logistics Services (Operations) Regulations aim to provide a regulatory framework for effective and efficient licensing processes, procedures and regulations for the Courier and Logistics industry in Nigeria.

The Rulemaking Process and Regulations will position NIPOST as a key player in the digital economy, in line with the National Digital Economy Policy for a Digital Nigera.

 

Dr Femi Adeluyi
Technical Assistant (Information Technology) to the
Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy
18th May 2021

DIGITAL JOB CREATION TRAINING HOLDS IN TWELVE STATES
Super User Written by April 30, 2021
The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), FNCS, FBCS, FIIM, presided over the Virtual Closing Ceremony of the Digital Jobs Creation training which took place today, the 30th of April, 2021. The training, which was coordinated by the Ministry, commenced on the 8th of March, 2021 and took place in 12 states, covering all the 6 geopolitical zones in the country, as follows: Nasarawa and Kogi (North-Central), Imo and Enugu (South-East), Katsina and Jigawa (North-West), Oyo and Ogun (South-West), Borno and Taraba (North-East) and, Edo and Delta (South-South).
 
The objective of the training is to ensure that Nigerians have the adequate digital access and digital literacy skills required to create digital jobs that can drive the Digital Economy of the country. This is in line with the Digital Nigeria Programme launched by His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, on the 19th of March 2020 and the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP) of the Federal Government, which aims to enable Nigerians to respond robustly and appropriately to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and propose clear-cut strategies to keep existing jobs and create opportunities for new ones.
The Digital Job Creation Programme also aligns with several pillars of the National Digital Economy Policy for a Digital Nigeria, including Pillar #2 on Digital Literacy and Skills. This Pillar recognises the fact that citizens are the greatest assets in the digital economy and it supports the development of a large pool of digitally literate and digitally skilled citizens. The Ministry is championing a paradigm shift that lays an emphasis on skills, in preference to merely having degrees without skills, since degrees are meant to validate skills.
Participants were provided with laptops and some stipend in addition to the digital skills acquired during the training. They will also be provided with a modem with 1-year broadband subscription.
The Honourable Minister urged participants to take the opportunity given to them with all seriousness and ensure that they make good use of the knowledge and tools that have been provided to create jobs for themselves and others in various sectors of the economy. He also encouraged them to take advantage of the mentorship opportunities that will be made available and to commit to continuous acquisition of skills.
 
 
Uwa Suleiman (Mrs)
Spokesperson to the
Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy
30th April, 2021
DIGITAL JOB CREATION TRAINING HOLDS IN FIVE STATES
Super User Written by March 13, 2021

The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, FNCS, FBCS, FIIM addressed the participants of the Digital Job Creation Training at the virtual Closing Ceremony, which took place on Friday, 12th March 2021.  The ceremony was a culmination of the first phase of the training that took place simultaneously in five States of the country, namely Oyo, Ogun, Katsina, Jigawa and Imo.

The training programmes were part of the initiatives in the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP) of the Federal Government, conceptualised and coordinated by the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.  The ESP aims to enable Nigerians to respond robustly and appropriately to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The objective of the training is to ensure that Nigerians have the adequate digital access and digital literacy skills required to create digital jobs that can drive the Digital Economy of the country.

The Digital Job Creation Programme is in line Digital Nigeria Programme launched by His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, on the 19th of March 2020. It also aligns with several pillars of the National Digital Economy Policy for a Digital Nigeria, including Pillar #2 on Digital Literacy and Skills.  This Pillar recognises the fact that citizens are the greatest assets in the digital economy and it supports the development of a large pool of digitally literate and digitally skilled citizens.  The Ministry is championing a paradigm shift that lays an emphasis on skills, in preference to merely having degrees without skills, since degrees are meant to validate skills.

In addition to the digital skills acquired during the training, all participants also received a laptop and some stipend.  They will also be provided with a modem with 1 year broadband subscription at an appropriate time, after the issue of suspension of the sale of new SIMs is resolved. Dr Pantami urged the participants to challenge themselves in order to stay motivated so that they can improve their level of skill.  He encouraged them to identify challenges in different sectors of the economy that their newly acquired digital skills can address.  He also tasked them to take advantage of the mentorship opportunities that will be made available. 

The next phase of the training is scheduled to commence in other parts of the country in a few days.

 

Dr Femi Adeluyi
Technical Assistant (Information Technology) to the
Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy
12th March, 2021