Nigerian government to prioritize digital literacy among Public Servants before 2022

Na’ankwat Dariem

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The Nigerian government says it will prioritize Digital literacy with a view of ensuring that by the year 2022 all Federal Public Servants are computer literates.

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami stated this at the official  hands-over ceremony of the  e-Government Training Centre to Nigeria by the Korean government  and the closing ceremony of the capacity development Programme  for e-Government in Nigeria.

Both projects were executed by the Korean Government through its representative in Nigeria, Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA).

Dr. Pantami explained: “We will establish a standing committee to bring together all the agencies under the Ministry to key into and implement of E- governance on the Ministry’s behave. We are not here just to implement but provide a policy direction and supervise what you are doing. So you are to get ready to come together play our role based on the policy or law that establish your institutions to see how we can be achieved it together. Also to see how civil servant can be trained in badges. And how we can be able to train our Federal Civil Servants in Nigeria by 2022, if possible before 2023,” he said.

Dr. Pantami emphasized that capacity development is key to attaining a digital economy “If you look at e-governance is all about digital economy and that that’s why the Ministry and its parastatals have been mandated to implement e-governance in Nigeria.”

He reiterated that in implementing e-governance there are three key areas that are fundamental: firstly putting strategy or road map in place,this has be achieved through the recent Federal Executive Council approval of the National e-governance Master Plan. Secondly to establish a Center where Civil servant can be trained some with basic knowledge, some intermediate and others advanced programmes which is ongoing .And thirdly, the need for training and retraining which are essential components in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) of, President Muhammadu Buhari led administration.”Dr. Pantami noted

The Minister also stated: “We are also in the process of accessing another grant from the Korean Republic which we will use to implement the second phase of our e-govancance master plan. Part of the plan is to establish some centres in states across the country with e-governance state plan that they can try to implement. This is because it may be difficult to bring all civil servants all over the country to Abuja. But when we have other centers automatically because of proximity and cost of living it is much easier for them to be trained there, ” he said. 

Dr. Pantami appreciated the Korean government for sponsoring Nigerian students to the Country for both MSc and Ph.D. programmes and for their continues support to Nigeria through other intervention programmes in the country.

The Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Nigeria, Maj. Gen. In-Tae Lee (Rtd.) He expressed hope that the centre will be used for its purpose and the impact of the investment of the Korean Government would be felt in Nigeria saying that, this training center will also play a significant role in upgrading the efficiency and competitiveness of your government.

He restated how e-Government had contributed to Korea’s national development in terms of economic dynamics and political accountability.

The KOICA Country Director, Mr. Woochan Chang stated that KOICA’s partnership does not end with this projects adding that  “KOICA will continue to help Nigeria to transform itself into digital governance and digital economy in the near future”.

The Center was also renamed after the Pioneer Country Director, KOICA, Dr. Jeong Kuk Hwan, who passed away early last year.

During the ceremony, a quick tour of the centre showed the 100-seater auditorium, a vision room that highlights the strides of Korea and Nigeria in e-Government till date as well as two smart classrooms for training public servants.

Centre has also been provided with a bus, a 250 KVA standby generator for 24 hours power supply.

Omolayo. A