The Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami has said virtual engagements are no longer informal in the Nigeria public sector, adding that the new communication method will be incorporated into the Public Service Rules (PSR).
“Virtual engagements are no longer informal rather they have been institutionalised in the Federal Government of Nigeria which means they are official means of engagement,”the minister said at the virtual launching of the National Policy on Virtual Engagements in the Public Service and Commissioning of four (4) Digital Economy Projects for a Digital Nigeria (Batch 10), in Abuja. He notes that “The Policy is going to form part of our public service rule in Nigeria”.
He indicates that the policy which was developed in collaboration with the Office of the Head of Service of the Federation (OHSF) was approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on the 14th of October 2020.
The minister mentioned that virtual engagements have been saving money for the federal government. This was as a result of reduction in traveling for official engagements thereby reducing cost. He points out that the money that is being saved could easily go to many other activities of government.
He briefly talked about the projects that were being commissioned in four different locations namely; Emergency Communication Centre, Akure, Ondo; Digital Economy Centre, Federal University Gashua, Yobe State; Digital Economy Centre, Delta State University, Abraka, Delta State; Digital Economy Centre, Government Secondary School, Rigasa, Kaduna State.
The director general, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi CCIE congratulating the minister for sustaining the implementation of the Digital Economy project, said “all these projects are to position Nigeria to create and capture value from Digital Economy”.
“At NITDA we have recalibrated and refocused all our activities in line with the National Digital Economy Policy (NDEPS)” the director general said.
He made reference to the Strategic Road Map and Action Plan (SRAP 2021 – 2024) which anchors on seven strategic pillars namely;
Digital Transformation – to come up with rapid business innovation to transform Nigeria into a leading digital economy
Digital Innovation and Entrepreneurship – to create an ecosystem that will help our country create and capture value from digital economy
Cybersecurity – to build confidence and trust in our citizens to use digital services Indigenous Content – to promote our citizens to come up with digital innovation and solutions
Digital Literacy and Skills
Dignitaries at the event include: Minister of State for Works & Housing, Engr Abubakar Aliyu, Senator Ogbo, represented the chairman, Senate Committee on Communications, Senator Oluremi Tinubu at the event.
Other guests include chair, Senate Committee on ICT, Sen. Yakubu Oseni; minister of State, Dr. Uchechukwu Ogah, Mines & Steel.
Head of parastatals present at the event include: the DG/CEO, National Identity Management Commission, Aliyu Aziz Abubakar; The MD/CEO of Galaxy Backbone, Muhammad Abubakar; MD & CEO of NIGCOMSAT, Mrs. Abimbola Alale and the Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of Nigerian Communications Commission, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta among others.