Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, was last night honoured with the award of “Digital Leader Of The Year 2020″ at the 4th edition of the Nigeria Tech Innovation and Telecoms Awards (NTITA), in affirmation of his leadership since mounting the saddle to lead Nigeria’s digital agenda.
For Pantami, who has received numerous commendations from President Muhammadu Buhari for building robust synergy in the digital sector worthy of emulation, the award further cement a rising credential as Nigeria’s most outstanding minster.
Also same night in Abuja, during an event organized to celebrate organizations and individuals in the technology sector who have distinguished themselves exceptionally, Governor Simon Bako Lalong of Plateau State was conferred with the ICT Governor of the Year. Lalong’s consistent leverage of technology and ICT-inclined policies to explore new level of social and economic impacts was hailed at NTITA 2020 as consistent with desired political leadership and vision required for ICT diffusion and people-focused development.
Plateau has a full fledged statutory ICT development agency through which the governor has pursued the often difficult agenda of driving ICT development,it was noted at NTITA 2020.
Exercise of political willpower is increasingly being recongised as powerful factor in actualising ICT agenda for development and empowering young people. For both Governor Lalong and Dr Pantami, NTITA recognized the challenge of applying required willpower to drive desired change.
The NTITA is Nigeria’s most prized IT and Telecom event, and touted as the sector’s OSCARS. The 2020 edition spotlight the country’s technology leadership, most promising innovations, companies and projects; and political leaders pushing the required willpower to foster right environment for ICT to flourish. It held as part of the commemorative events in the tech industry to celebrate Nigeria’s Diamond Jubilee.
Pantami’s robust profile as a leading light in ICT policy drive and a pathfinder for Nigeria’s steady push in digital economy attracts wide appeal at NTITA.
The innovative goal-oriented approach of Dr Pantami, and the ongoing transformation of the sector championed by him has drawn the accolades of industry captains and notably, state governors from whom Pantami had successfully drawn a concession on Right of Way for telecom operators to end over a decade ogre in the industry.
“On Wednesday 21st August 2019, when he was sworn in as the minister to oversee the Ministry of Communications, some of us who followed his activities as the Director General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) were convinced that he was going to lift the ministry from where it was to the next level. Knowing him as a thinker, an individual full of innovative ideas, and a man under whose leadership NITDA came up prominently to the fore”, said Gov Hope Uzodinma of Imo State.
“Honestly speaking not because the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy is here with us, the activities of the Ministry of Communications was not well known to many Nigerians before his arrival as the minister of Communications. We have applauded his competency in handling the affairs of the ministry, he gingered the performance in his ministry that makes it possible for him to achieve a lot during his short stay in office,” said Governor Babagana Umara Zulum of Borno State.
For Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State, Pantami offers sterling leadership at a very critical time. His words: “If you will list 2 or 3 performing Ministers in this administration, the Minister, Dr Pantami is at the top. He took a Ministry that was sleeping and upgraded it to a 21st century Ministry”.
In the last one year under his leadership at the ministry, over ten national policies has been developed and more than 50 projects to accelerate the development of Nigeria’s digital economy for a Digital Nigeria have been commissioned despite the global COVID 19 pandemic,
Nigeria’s broadband penetration hit an unprecedented 43.30% and over 120,000 Nigerians have already been empowered with digital skills in line with the paradigm shift championed by Pantami who has emphasised skills over mere certificates.
As the sector’s leading awards, NTITA, organised by, InstinctWave, operates as a collaborative platform with stakeholders majorly: the Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON). InstinctWave is Africa’s premium B2B event and media specialists, organizers of the event.