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NITDA, CcHUB Launch National Technology Talent Gap Analysis Research

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NITDA, CcHUB Launch National Technology Talent Gap Analysis Research

…Nigeria IT Talent Gap Analysis 2022

Olushola Okunlade Writes

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) in collaboration with Co-Creation Hub (CcHUB) has announced the launch of a National Technology Talent Gap Analysis Research, 2022.

This is an update of the Technology Talent Gap Analysis 2016.

It includes updated data and insights, incorporates a more rigorous study approach, and captures the change in the technology talent need and supply since the prior study.

“This research will give us great insights into the knowledge gaps that have been identified and will help us make better decisions on technology talent gap acceleration in Nigeria, said Kashifu Inuwa CCIE,” the Director General/CEO of NITDA.

In a similar vein, the CEO of Co-creation Hub, Mr. Bosun Tijani, said, “we are excited to be working with NITDA again on this research as we further curate useful insights on the technology talent demand and supply in Nigeria”.

Nigeria’s tech ecosystem has expanded over the past decade, and as a result, the shortage of expertise has gotten more pronounced. With a population of over 200 million and a staggering unemployment rate of 33.3%, one out of every three Nigerians who are able and eager to work is unemployed.

In implementing this National Multi-Stakeholder Research Project, a thorough investigation was conducted into the gaps and potential that can be brought to the forefront in Nigeria. The shortage or absence of literature on particular technological skills deficiencies in the Nigerian information technology sector is one of these gaps and possibilities. Therefore, this is an excellent opportunity for this study to define the key and specialized technology talent in Nigeria and their supply and demand projections. In addition, most Nigerian institutions of higher education have an incomplete grasp of the impact of technology education programs. This is an opportunity for the study to gather feedback on the impact from study participants, particularly students.

The 2022 study will apply a descriptive research approach and triangulation of data. As a fundamentally multi-stakeholder study, the research design would approach the Talent gap issue in the Nigerian Information Technology Sector from a comprehensive viewpoint, incorporating all essential stakeholders and participants across all variable spectrums.

The quantitative method intends to collect data from practicing technology developers and university undergraduates in technology, computer science, and other relevant subjects. While the qualitative will collect data from Universities (Computer Science/technology departments), technology talent headhunters, Polytechnics, organizations heavily dependent on technology talents, development partners, foreign tech-talent recruiters, government parastatals, and alternative technology education platforms. In addition, the research will analyze previous publications on technological talent and technology skills in Nigeria to get a broad understanding of the topic under investigation and supplement the aforementioned methodologies. Finally, the research will also collect public opinion on the topic of the supply and demand for IT talent in Nigeria employing pre-planned tweets relating to poaching.

Utilizing Cochran’s method, the sample size was obtained using a multistage sampling technique. As a result, information will be gathered from 1,330 samples collected throughout all sectors. The initial phase divides the 36 states of Nigeria into six groupings (geopolitical zones), and the second stage, purposive sampling, will select two states from each cluster. The objective nature of stage two is determined by prior knowledge of the states that are technologically and innovatively vibrant, based on criteria such as the presence of technology skills acceleration programs, universities of technology, polytechnics, and a positive outlook for their technology ecosystem. In each geopolitical zone, three universities, one public, one private, and one polytechnic, will be chosen from the list of states. The requirements for universities and polytechnics (stage three) are based on the amount of computer science-related courses provided and the number of students enrolled in IT departments. Lastly, a proportional sampling method will be utilized to randomly choose study participants in each department based on the number of enrolled students.

Know More About NITDA: The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is committed to implementing the National Digital economy policy for digital Nigeria. Their mandate is to create a framework for the planning, research, development, standardization, application, coordination, monitoring, evaluation, and regulation of Information Technology practices in Nigeria.

The priorities of the Agency are Developmental Regulation, Digital Literacy and Skills, Solid Infrastructure, Service Infrastructure, Digital Services Development and Promotion, Software Infrastructure, Digital Society and Emerging Technologies & Indigenous Content Development and Adoption

Know More About CcHUB: Co-creation Hub (CcHUB) launched Nigeria’s first open living lab for technologists, entrepreneurs, tech companies, investors, and hackers in 2010 to accelerate the application of social capital and technology for economic prosperity. The hub has since expanded to include an umbrella of pan-African innovation enablers that includes the CcHUB Design Lab in Rwanda iHub and eLimu in Kenya, and Growth Capital by CcHUB and CcHub Syndicate.  All CcHUB companies contribute to stimulating innovation and technology application towards achieving social impact across diverse sectors including education, public health, digital security, and governance.

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NITDA Showcased Nigeria’s Innovative IT Policy Formulation Approach At 2023 London Blockchain Conference

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NITDA Showcased Nigeria’s Innovative IT Policy Formulation Approach At 2023 London Blockchain Conference

Rashidat Okunlade Writes

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), showcased Nigeria’s Innovative IT Policy Formulation Approach at the just concluded London Blockchain Conference. NITDA led the Nigerian delegation at the conference, held from 31st May to 2nd June 2023 at the Queen Elizabeth II International Conference Centre, Westminster, London, United Kingdom.

Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, CCIE, the Director General/CEO, represented by Dr. Usman Gambo Abdullahi, Director, Information Technology Infrastructure Solutions, participated in a panel discussion on “Blockchain Innovation Program: Changing Lives Through BSV Education”. He used the opportunity to inform the global Blockchain community of Nigeria’s innovative approaches toward ensuring nationwide adoption of the technology.

NITDA Showcased Nigeria’s Innovative IT Policy Formulation Approach At 2023 London Blockchain Conference

Mr. Inuwa informed that the National Blockchain Policy for Nigeria, approved by the Federal Executive Council on Wednesday 3rd May 2023 was unveiled by Professor Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, FCIIS, FBCS, FNCS, the former Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, on Tuesday 16th May 2023. He further indicated that the Policy was developed to help Nigeria’s transition into the digital economy by using Blockchain technology in boosting innovation, improving public services, creating job opportunities, reducing corruption, and driving economic growth.

 

It may be recalled that the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy for a Digital Nigeria (NDEPS) was launched and unveiled by Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, the former President, in 2019. The Policy, anchored on 8 pillars, has Digital Society and Emerging Technologies as one of the pillars. NITDA, being the Policy’s key implementing Agency, crafted the Agency’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan, anchored on seven strategic pillars, namely Developmental Regulation, Digital Literacy, and Skills, Digital Entrepreneurship, Indigenous Content Development and Promotion, Digital Transformation, Cybersecurity, and Emerging Technologies. The implementation of the National Blockchain Policy for Nigeria, focused on three areas – talent development, innovation, and adoption – is aimed at helping Nigeria achieve, among others, improved transparency and accountability, increased efficiency, enhanced security, financial inclusion, and job creation. It will also help in boosting innovation, improve government services, drive economic growth, enhance public trust in governance, and promote citizen engagement.

NITDA Showcased Nigeria’s Innovative IT Policy Formulation Approach At 2023 London Blockchain Conference

Mr. Inuwa highlighted the global high demand for employable skills. With a population of over 200 Million, Nigeria accounts for about 50% of West Africa’s population. Furthermore, Nigeria has a significant brain capital and a strong comparative advantage to leverage Blockchain technology to supply highly skilled labour to the global market. It is in this regard that the Agency commissioned the National Talent Gap Assessment which resulted in the development of the National Digital Skills Strategy. The NITDA Blockchain Scholarship Scheme with Domineum Blockchain Technology Solutions as the implementing partner and BSV Blockchain Association through BSV Blockchain Academy as the content provider,  is part of the Agency’s grand plan of adding 500,000 Blockchain professionals to the talent pool, with the aim of making Nigeria a leading talent hub for Blockchain innovation and development. The first batch of the Scholarship program recorded about 92,000 applications out of which 32,000 have successfully completed the program and their certificates were issued at the launching and unveiling of the Policy.

It is exciting to note that Nigeria secured the commitment of BSV Blockchain Association through Stefan Mathews, co-Founder and Executive Chairman of the nChain Group, a global Blockchain technology and Intellectual Property holding company as well as Executive Committee member of Bitcoin Association, for subsequent batches of the program.

 

It may also be recalled that NITDA issued the National Blockchain Adoption Strategy in 2021, after series of engagements with ecosystem stakeholders. The Strategy focused on six initiatives, namely Establishment of Nigeria Blockchain Consortium; the Strengthening of the Regulatory and legal framework; Provision of National Digital Identity; the Promotion of Blockchain Digital Literacy and Awareness; Creation of Blockchain Business Incentive Programmes; and Establishment of a National Blockchain Sandbox for Proof of Concepts and Pilot Implementation. The National Blockchain Policy leverages the successes achieved as well as lessons learned from the implementation of the Strategy.

 

The Director General further reiterated NITDA’s commitment to sustaining the momentum, leveraging Blockchain technology in particular and emerging technologies in general, towards transforming Nigeria into a leading digital economy, providing quality life and economic prosperity for all.

 

 

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NITDA, NAICOM Collaborate To Institutionalise Cyber Insurance

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NITDA, NAICOM Collaborate To Institutionalise Cyber Insurance

Rashidat Okunlade Writes

The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is exploring partnership and collaboration with the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) on how to institutionalise Cyber Security Insurance in the country.

The Director-General of NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, CCIE who led the Agency’s management team to the Commission on a courtesy visit reiterated the fact that the insurance coverage is long overdue, especially as it is virtually impossible for any business to operate without connecting to the internet.

According to Inuwa, almost every adult in Nigeria moves around with “a supercomputer in his/her hand or pockets”, which invariably exposes one to cybercrimes and criminals.

While quoting some reports that the global cybercrime as of 2021 was almost $6TR and projected to grow by 15% year-on-year, the DG said that as of today the figures have increased to about $8TR and will reach $10.5 TR by 2025.

“Cybercrime, if you can quantify it as a nation, will be the third largest economy, and it is bigger than all crimes combined together, in terms of cost”.

“In view of this, we need to institutionalise Cyber Insurance because Nigeria loses about N200B to cybercrime annually, imagine that just 0.0% of the Nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is worth more than N200B”, Inuwa noted.

NITDA, NAICOM Collaborate To Institutionalise Cyber Insurance

DG, NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa, CCIE with the Commissioner for Insurance, NAICOM, Mr. Olorundare Sunday Thomas, after the Courtesy visit.

Inuwa said, “Looking at this and the rate services are being digitised, coupled with the push for government digital services as well as COVID-19, the pace we are digitising has been accelerated; the future is therefore arriving faster than expected”.

The DG who emphasised the importance of securing the Insurance averred that whereas the commission has the primary mandate of insurance, the Agency also has certain mandates relating to cyber insurance, including the development of Information Technology in Nigeria which Cyber Security is an integral part.

The NITDA Boss expressed the hope that once the insurance is gotten, the country will be well positioned to mitigate the recurring losses, and the ecosystem as well as the quality of systems in Nigeria will be strengthened and upgraded respectively.

“Achieving this feat will also translate to strengthening developers of systems to up their game, by taking it through a series of tests before taking their products to the market”.

“Many countries have institutionalised cyber insurance, Africa inclusive; South Africa, Kenya, and Egypt have done so. Looking at our status in Africa as the largest economy and having the most vibrant digital ecosystem as well as the fastest growing digital economy, I think it is the right time for us also to institutionalise Cyber Insurance in Nigeria”, the DG maintained.

The Commissioner for Insurance/Chief Executive Officer of the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM), Olorundare Sunday Thomas who gave a nod to the proposal brought forward by the NITDA DG, noted that he has always been talking to relevant stakeholders to look at the positive side of risks associated with technology.

“Looking at the volume of data that are driven daily, the cost associated with data, magnitude, and impact of the economy of nations, if there should be any economy that should be more concerned about cybercrime, it should be Nigeria”.

“The more we look forward to using technology to resolve many problems, we must also seize the opportunity to increase our workforce”, Thomas added.

The CFI assured the NITDA team of the Commission’s readiness to partner with the Agency towards institutionalising cyber insurance.

Both teams were unanimous in hitting the ground running as they agreed to create a committee of six members, three from each organisation to ascertain the modus operandi and fashion out the terms of reference.

 

 

 

 

 

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ASR Africa Launches Tech-Based Mentorship Program For Girls In Tertiary Institutions Across Northern Nigeria

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Rashidat Okunlade Writes

The Abdul Samad Rabiu Africa Initiative (ASR Africa) has unveiled a pivotal Mentorship Programme tailored for young female students at the Federal College of Education, Technical (FCET), Gusau, Zamfara State today.

 

This initiative, which was birthed and draws inspiration from the principles highlighted at the 2022 UN Women Convention on the Status of Women (CSW) in New York, USA, is centred around “Innovation, technological change, and education in the digital age for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls”.

 

Dr. Ubon Udoh, Managing Director/CEO of ASR Africa, said, ” Our commitment to education at ASR Africa goes beyond providing infrastructure and financial support, but also involves significant technical assistance. Our collaboration with the management and staff of FCET Gusau is one such partnership. I enjoin the young ladies of the college to fully embrace this opportunity and leverage it to become valuable contributors to their communities.” “With the launch of this program, ASR Africa is proud to stand at the forefront of advancing the UN Women’s mission by striving to bridge the digital divide for Nigerian women and girls,” he added.

 

In his response, Prof. Umar Bello, Provost of FCET Gusau, expressed profound gratitude to ASR Africa’s Chairman, Abdul Samad Rabiu, for exceeding their initial request for infrastructural assistance to include technical assistance which has immense benefits for the school. He also acknowledged the partners who are collaborating with ASR Africa in this endeavour.

 

This ASR Africa mentorship program seeks to address several hurdles that young women in STEM fields encounter, such as the scarcity of female role models, limited opportunities for mentoring and sponsorship, and deep-rooted cultural and societal biases. The program is expected to bolster the number of female students opting for careers in STEM fields, enhancing their academic performance and preparing them for future career prospects.

 

The launch attracted attention and participation from numerous women’s organisations from the United Nations and across the continent of Africa, some of whom engaged the students through enlightening presentations and a thought-provoking Q&A session.

 

ASR Africa, established in 2021 by African industrialist, philanthropist, and Chairman of BUA Group, Abdul Samad Rabiu, is devoted to providing sustainable, impact-based indigenous solutions to urgent developmental issues in health, education, and social development across Africa, via its annual USD100million Africa Fund for Sustainable Development and Renewal.

 

 

 

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