Governor Simon Bako Lalong has institutionalised ICT local content in Plateau state with approval for the establishment of the Office for Plateau State Content Development (OPCD) to be domiciled within the Plateau State Information & Communication Technology Development Agency (PICTDA).
The OPCD will, for now, operate as a desk office inside the state’s IT development and regulatory agency. The new office will operate as a programme of the PICTDA. Part of the mandate of the OPCD is to implement the statutory guidelines requiring all government ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) to seek clearance from the PICTDA in respect of all ICT procurements and installations.
“Governor Lalong has continued to provide visionary leadership and notably in ICT, Plateau state is being prepared to be an active player in the digital economy with up-front policies aimed at building local capacity and patronage for indigenous talents, said Director General of PICTDA, Daser David in Jos, Plateau administrative capital.
National ICT local content implementation since 2013
At national level, ICT local content implementation effectively commenced in December, 3 2013 following the creation of the Office of National Content (ONC) designed to operate as a programme of the National Information Technology and Development Agency (NITDA).
Inspired by the successes of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) within the oil and gas industry, ONC was modelled to work closely with the NCDMB with the overall objective to promote indigenous ICT entrepreneurship and ensure government patronage for local ICT companies.
OPCD to show preference for indigenous companies
Also by design, the OPCD is targeting to “promote indigenous content by ensuring that preference is given to indigenous companies where capacity or the product or service exists before attempting to source outside.
“A focus on indigenous or local content to achieve the development of local skills, technology transfer, use of local manpower in manufacturing and service provision. A move towards ICT development as enshrined in the mandate of PICTDA.
“The registration of all ICT companies in Plateau and the domestication of the guidelines for Nigerian Content Development in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) with a focus on revenue generation for Plateau State.”
Since 2013, the NITDA has aggressively pursued the implementation of the local content guidelines to achieve a target of 50% local content in the industry. With the creation of the OPCD, Plateau state is similarly seeking to impose local content requirements on companies operating in the sector.