The digital economy needs collaboration amongst stakeholders including the government, private and public institutions, as well as generality of the people to fully leverage its potentials across sectors, Director General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi told his audience recently at the Kwara State University (KWASU), Malete.
The “digital economy presents wealth of opportunities for the growth and development of the country. But this could only be achieved if the government, institutions and people work together in a manner that ensure inclusiveness and sustainability,” Abdullahi stated as a keynote speaker during the 2023 Digital Economy Sensitisation Lecture Series organised by KWASU.
The lecture which focused on; ‘Digital Economy: The Triple Helix Model of Government, People and Institutions’ also coincided with the launch of the university’s Centre for Digital Economy.
According to Abdullahi, who was represented by the Director, Standard Guidelines and Framework (SGF), Mr. Oladejo Olawunmi, the three elements involved in the advancement of digital economy need to put resources together in order to foster economic prosperity for other sectors of the economy.
His words: “The triple helix model is an interaction among these three for the purpose of fostering the economic transformation of various sector of the economy.”
Abdullahi described the role of the government as critical in developing the digital economy because it must enable a conducive environment for innovation, investment and growth.
Learning institutions must impact knowledge on the people and promote research and intellectual discussion. People and the industries must be a vehicle for commercialisation, he added even as he recalled that the rigorous implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy, (NDEPS) by stakeholders under the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami has significantly increased the contribution of the digital economy to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Products by an “unprecedented 18.44 per cent.”
“In building a digital economy, NITDA has developed and is implementing several projects with the resolve to develop digital skills in educational institutions and rural communities across the country. In addition, the Information Technology (IT) knowledge gap is being bridged in under-served areas to develop human capital and provide universal access to knowledge in order to create a knowledge-based economy,” said Abdullahi.
Abdullahi, who acknowledged the role of government to provide relevant regulations to serve as guidance for the institutions, people and industries, stated that NITDA’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan 2021-2024 (SRAP) was mapped out in line with the vision of NDEPS.
According to him, the document with seven strategic pillars would not only ensure the development, usage and sustainability of digital technology but would also deepen Nigeria’s economy digitally, ensure diversification, promote innovation and digital literacy amongst Nigeria.
“The NITDA’s SRAP is focused on the facilitation of a rapid transformation of the digital economy through elaborate stakeholders’ collaborations for the implementation of the NDEPS. All the seven pillars of the roadmap and their objectives require extensive collaboration with the stakeholder to achieve their aims,” said Abdullahi while noting that the theme of the lecture resonated with the Digital Literacy and Skills, and the Digital Innovation and Entrepreneurship pillars of the SRAP designed to facilitate the digital transformation of the country.