Stakeholders’ Forum on ICT Convergence in Nigeria holds

As part of the ongoing efforts to harmonize the Information Technology and the Communications Technology sector in Nigeria through a unified National Information Communication Technology (ICT) policy, the …

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Omobola JohnsonAs part of the ongoing efforts to harmonize the Information Technology and the Communications Technology sector in Nigeria through a unified National Information Communication Technology (ICT) policy, the Ministry of Communication Technology has announced plans to host a public forum on the Draft ICT Policy on Friday, March 09, 2012 at the Lagos City Hall, Onikan by 9.00 am.

In a press statement from the office of the Hon Minister, Mrs. OmobolaJohnson, says the Draft ICT Policy was released by the Ministry for comments and suggestions from stakeholders on January 09, 2012. Since then the Ministry has received various comments from industry groups, players and stakeholders both in Nigeria and abroad. These inputs, according to the statement, have been collated for presentation at the forthcoming forum for robust discussions.

Recently, the Ministry met with Industry Associations and professional groups such as ATCON, ALTON, ISPON, NIG, NCS, ITAN, CPN and NATCOMS who had earlier sent in their input on the Draft ICT Policy.

Mrs. Johnson had at a recent interactive session stressed; “We have had various policies covering the IT and the Communications industry but the convergence of technologies and the industry have dictated the need for an integrated policy document. A committee was set up by the Ministry to harmonize all the existing policies, reflect new realities where necessary in order to provide a working document and a takeoff point that could elicit robust debate and discussion by stakeholders’’

The minister described the unveiled policy document as a statement of intent, stressing that once there was an agreement on the statement of intent, a country ICT master plan will be developed. She said that will include an implementation plan with detailed implementation activities, timelines, milestones and funding requirements as well as funding options.

It will be recalled that the Minister had in August, 2011 set up an adhocCommittee headed by Prof RaymondAkwule (President, Digital Bridge Institute, Nigeria) to harmonize the various policies for the different sectors in the ICT industry (Telecommunications, Broadcasting, Information Technology and Postal Services). Last year, thefirst stakeholders’ forum where the minister unveiled her roadmap for ICTdevelopment was held. Such forum will be held regularly to engage the industry to ensure that the Ministry achieves its set targets for the ICT sector and more importantly position Nigeria for global competitiveness. We wish the forum a great deliberation!

Additional information from ATCONNEWS

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