The National Information and Technology Development Agency, (NITDA) has raised the alarm over the surging demand for digital services noting it is already putting pressure on existing ICT and Telco infrastructure
The NITDA Director-General, Mr. Kashifu Abdullahi who made this known in a keynote remarks delivered during a webinar organized by the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) stated that ICT would play a major role in the global effort at returning to the new normal adding that COVID-19 has triggered an unprecedented paradigm shift in the way of life and only ICT sector can accelerate the development of Digital Economy.
He disclosed that the new trend has stimulated a surge in demand for digital services and are putting tremendous pressure on the existing ICT and Telco infrastructure.
Abdullahi therefore called for government’s intervention and regulatory instruments to help you – the sector players come out from this pandemic stronger then when you entered.
The NITDA boss noted that broadband infrastructure remains the most critical infrastructure the nation needs to wither the storm of the pandemic adding that the connectivity drive of the government has made Nigeria a mobile-first market, with almost three-quarters of about 100m internet users consuming digital services using smartphones.
While assessing the impact of the broadband penetration, Abdullahi observed that various government’s efforts like reassigning of the ministry’s mandates to accommodate the digital economy plan, National broadband policy and Nigerian Digital Economy Strategic Plans had within eight months increased the broadband penetration from 32 percent to almost 42 percent.
The DG explained that NITDA under his leadership is focusing on other initiatives that provide the skeleton and flesh of the digital economy while broadband provides the backbone infrastructure for the digital economy to thrive.
He said that NITDA is doing to complement the broadband penetration’s efforts of the government to include Developmental Regulations; Digital Literacy and Skills; Solid Infrastructure; Service Infrastructure; Digital Service Development and Promotion; Indigenous Content Development and Promotion among others.