The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has called for regional collaboration in accelerating digital transformation across Africa.
NITDA Director-General, Kashifu Inuwa made the appeal in a statement issued by Hadiza Umar, the Head of Corporate Affairs and External Relations of the agency.
Inuwa made the call at the just concluded maiden edition of the Gulf Information Technology Exhibition (GITEX) in Morocco, that held from May 31 to June 2.
GITEX Africa is a technology exhibition in the region that brought together industry leaders, policy makers, entrepreneurs and innovators to discuss and showcase advancements in technology.
It was themed: “Accelerating Digital Transformation in Africa: Strategies, Challenges and Opportunities”, and Fast Tracking to an Integrated and Inclusive Digital Public Infrastructure”.
The event provided an ideal platform for organisations to promote dialogue, showcase innovative solutions and build partnerships to harness the potential of the digital age.
NITDA’s participation focuses on fostering collaborations, sharing best practices and addressing the challenges hindering Africa’s digital growth.
Represented by Dr Aristotle Onumo, the Director of Corporate Planning and Strategy, he said the digital transformation in the region would provide opportunities that could propel the continent into a digital era of innovation and inclusive development.
He highlighted the need for African countries to invest in digital infrastructure, skills development and policy reforms to reap the benefits of digital transformation driven by technology.
“There is the need to collaborate with governments, academia, industry, venture capitalists and the tech community in order to accelerate digital transformation in Africa.
“African countries require to work together to develop common standards and regulations for the digital economy, and to promote the adoption of digital technologies across all sectors of the economy,” he said.
He further commended progress made through African Free Trade Agreement and African Smart Alliance, and called for a sustained effort towards a common digital identity for Africa.
Inuwa also highlighted that Africa faced the dearth of the inadequate infrastructure, poor digital skills as well as digital inclusion, pointing out that there is need for more investments in human capital development.
“Inspite these challenges, Africa has the potential to become a major player in the global digital economy.
“African nations should work together to overcome the challenges and seize the opportunities that abound in digital transformation.
“Technology is a key driver of economic growth and job creation, so we need to invest in digital infrastructure, develop our own digital strategies in order to fully reap the benefits of the digital revolution.
“Public-private partnerships are essential for driving digital transformation in Africa,hence work for more inclusive and sustainable digital future for the continent,” he said.
He reiterated that NITDA was committed to supporting the digital transformation of Nigeria and Africa.
According to him, the agency is working with governments, private sector and the tech community to develop and implement policies, programmes and initiatives that accelerate digital transformation on the continent.