NITDA Mulls Digital Innovation Hubs in Nigeria Through Public-Private Partnership

The Director Director General, NITDA, Mr Kashifu Inuwa.

There are indications that across Nigeria Digital Innovation Hubs would soon be established to in Nigeria to help drive digital innovation.

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Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mr Kashifu Inuwa who has given his nod to the call for proposals to support the establishment them noted will always appreciate and identify with every initiative aimed at boosting the growth of digital innovation and entrepreneurship.

Inuwa gave his consent in his keynote address on the topic “Public, Private Partnerships: Drivers of Digital Innovation in Nigeria’’ at the formal launch of the initiative by the Digital Transformation Centre (DTC) of the German International Cooperation (GIZ).

The NITDA boss who was represented by the Lagos Office Head of the Agency, Mr Chioma Oke-Aguguo, commended the German International Cooperation (GIZ), for the laudable initiative, noting that the idea is aimed at engaging stakeholders in the Nigerian innovation ecosystem, helping them to understand the Digital Innovation Hub concept, and generating interest from prospective entrepreneurs and innovators.

He said that it is only through initiatives like the one proposed that the nation’s startup businesses will be able to emerge from the pandemic and grow into globally competitive companies.

Inuwa assured that as the apex regulator of the Information Technology (IT) sector in Nigeria, the NITDA will always appreciate and identify with every initiative aimed at boosting the growth of digital innovation and entrepreneurship.

“Digital innovation hubs are the surest way to help lift Nigerians out of poverty and support the government in its economic diversification efforts, through the creation or more Innovation-Driven Enterprises (IDEs)”, Inuwa maintained.

He said that since 2020, the Nigerian government has invested heavily to provide the much-needed digital infrastructure, digital services and platforms, as well as digital literacy and skills for all citizens, towards transforming the country into a world-class digital economy.

“This digital transformation has enabled rapid development across the country, positively impacting virtually all sectors of the economy, which has resulted in higher performance and efficiency, creation of new digital jobs and indigenous IT innovations, and has boosted economic growth in the country with an unprecedented GDP contribution, by the ICT sector, of 18.4% in the 2nd Quarter of 2022”, he recalled.

He said that public-private partnerships is needed to sustain the successes recorded from the rigorous implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) and accelerate Nigeria’s digital economic transformation.

Inuwa disclosed that almost every State has embraced the technological trend and provided residents with facilities to advance their technical development, while others are supported by the Nigerian government through various Federal agencies and programmes meant to develop the Nigerian tech sector.

He stressed that the engagement of PPPs in Nigeria will require an enabling environment for dedicated public and private sector champions that address the challenges of digital infrastructure development head-on.

While assuring of NITDA’s commitment towards to working with private sector partners, he noted that the Agency will never relent in its avowed determination to continue supporting initiatives aimed at helping startups to innovate and develop more innovation-driven and globally scalable businesses.

He urged all relevant stakeholders in Nigeria’s digital innovation ecosystem to step up and join the organisers to develop infrastructure to help lift the country’s innovation-driven enterprises to higher levels of prosperity and economic stability.

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