The Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, has explained how the agency would save Nigeria from losing an estimated $2billion (about N720 billion) being lost as capital flights to importation of Information Technology, IT.
Speaking at the ongoing 37th Gulf Information Technology Exhibition, GITEX, holding at the Dubai World Trade Centre, United Arabs Emirates, Mr Pantami said the capital flight was as a result of importation of foreign technologies into the country.
”NITDA has realised the need to develop our ICT ecosystem, the indigenous IT companies and the start-ups by offering them an enabling environment in terms of policy and laws to operate.
”This is one of the ways Nigeria can adopt to curb annual two billion dollars (N720 billion) capital flight,” he said.
Mr Pantami said that the agency had gone to GITEX with seven agenda designed to develop Nigeria’s IT industry and curb the huge annual capital flight.
”These include promoting IT regulations in Nigeria, IT development and promotions, striking partnership on how to better secure Nigerian cyberspace and capacity building.
”It also include promotion of e-government in Nigeria, showcasing indigenous tech innovations as well as looking for investors, who will assist in supporting local development of Nigeria’s IT industry,” he said.
The D-G said that NITDA was working with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to ensure that the annual estimated N37.8 billion wasted on frivolous ICT projects was curbed through enforcing NITDA Act.
He said that the Act stated that all MDAs must get clearance from NITDA for any IT project they wanted to embark upon to ensure those projects were implementable.
According to him, NITDA’s screening of an MDA’s IT project conducted recently resulted in saving government N500 million.
”This is saved from a single IT project and you can now imagine how much we will be saving government as an agency, if thorough screening of all MDAs’ IT projects are carried out in the country,” Mr Pantami said