The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Pantami, has said the Information Technology (IT) project clearance has saved the country N22.5bn.
He said this at the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) @20 anniversary press conference in Abuja on Monday.
He said though NITDA was established in April 2001 as a department under the Ministry of Communication, it has grown to become one of the best performing agencies of government in Nigeria.
“This is an opportunity to thank all those who served in the agency from its establishment to date. One of the achievements of NITDA that I always appreciate, especially as President Muhammadu Buhari is more about fighting corruption is the IT clearance.
“That function was missing for many years but it was reactivated by NITDA, this IT clearance has saved the federal government N2bn from just a single IT project and has so far saved the government N22.5bn,” Pantami said.
He said that NITDA also deserves commendation on the Nigerian Data Protection Regulation puts in place to ensure data protection and data privacy which is Nigerians’ constitutional right.
The minister said, “Many African countries are now making references to Nigerian Data Protection Regulation. I can say that Nigeria is not just a giant of Africa in terms of economy, it is a giant of Africa in the area of data protection and data privacy.”
He commended the management of NITDA for taking the agency to greater height through its various policies including training of citizenry as well as the people with disabilities on ICT. He therefore, tasked the agency to redouble its efforts.
NITDA impacts over 2.5m Nigerians
On his part, the Director General, NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, said that the agency has impacted over 2.5m Nigerians directly and/or indirectly in multiple areas of IT through its interventions and training.
He said, “NITDA has been working assiduously to help Nigeria catch the train of the 4th industrial revolution without leaving any sector of the economy behind.”
He said that NITDA was established on the 18 April 2001, following the Federal Executive Council’s approval of the National Information Technology Policy in March 2001.
According to him, consequently, the National Assembly passed into law the NITDA Act, 2007, which mandates the Agency to regulate, develop, and advise on Information Technology practices in Nigeria.
“Ever since, NITDA has been working assiduously to help Nigeria catch the train of the 4th industrial revolution without leaving any sector of the economy behind. The agency has played critical roles in national development by providing the legal framework for information technology development, pioneering IT developmental projects, facilitating access to information technology goods and services, catalysing job creation and ensuring national security,” he added.