Transition to the digital economy was no longer optional, but “an absolute necessity,” Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari declared on Thursday as he launched the e-government masterplan to drive the digital roadmap of Africa’s largest economy of some 200 million people. Buhari spoke at the opening ceremony of the e-Nigeria 2019 conference in Abuja.
The president directed ministries, departments, and agencies (MDAs) to conform with the ongoing transition of all government operations to digital platforms that will enhance efficiency and effectiveness in service delivery under the new digital dispensation.
The eNigeria event is the flagship conference of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA). The chief host and convener for eNigeria 2019 is the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami while the event’s host and convener is NITDA’s Director-General/Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi.
“Our recent introduction of the Nigerian e-government Masterplan will further consolidate our successes to date and increase interoperability among the different ministries, departments, and agencies of government, said the president as he unveiled the roadmap.
According to him, the digitization of key operations in public service such as the use of the Bank Verification Number, Treasury Single Account and the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System had enabled the government to save cost and fight corruption.
He said his government recognises the need to leverage the global trends in the digitalization of economies thus the need to change the name of the ministry with oversight on ICT as well as get all MDAs involved in the transition to the digital economy. His words:
“It is in recognition of this fact that we decided to re-designate the Federal Ministry of Communications as the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy with a mandate to develop and implement a harmonised and well-coordinated digital economy policy and strategy for Nigeria.
“A key requirement of the e-government master plan is for all government institutions to create a digital transformation technical working group that will work with the ministry of communications and digital economy to ensure seamless and coordinated implementation of projects, programs, and policies.”
Other attendees at the 12th edition of the eNigeria conference, exhibitions and awards are Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule and Senator Oluremi Tinubu.