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African ICT Foundation Partners UNESCO on Internet Governance Policy



African ICT Foundation Partners UNESCO on Internet Governance Policy, SiliconNigeria

The African ICT Foundation is partnering with the UNESCO to host a stakeholders’ engagement for the advancement of evidence-based policy making of Internet governance

The virtual even, which holds Thursday, July 29th is the first of the Foundation’s partnership with global organizations across to the world to deepened internet penetration in Africa.

The event which is jointly organised by UNESCO Headquarters and the African ICT Foundation, seeks to engage in an extensive partnership with the West African Internet Governance Forum community via the newly launched Dynamic Coalition of IUIs, so as to join forces for advancing evidence-based policy making of Internet governance and fostering digital collaboration in line with UN SG’s roadmap of digital cooperation.

The discussion at the forum will focus on Advancing digital transformation in the West Africa Sub-Region via applying UNESCO’s Internet Universality ROAM Principles and Indicators.

The President of the African ICT Foundation, Mr. Tony Ojobo and the Director for Partnership and Operational Programme Monitoring, UNESCO, Marielza Oliveira will give the opening remark at the event that will be moderated by the West Africa Regional Director at the Foundation, Dr Kossi Amessinou and with the Executive Secretary, Mr. Bassey Emmanuel and the Benin Focal Point Director, Nazaire Hounghihin as rapporteur.s

A statement from the Foundation’s Secretariat, in Lagos South West Nigeria, issued by the Director of Communication, Mr. Isaiah Erhiawarien stated that Internet governance-related issues will be addressed and covered during the session.

According to the statement, the Forum will allow national leading experts from West African Sub-Region countries to present their national assessment projects using Internet Universality Indicators and foster further engagement with West African IGF communities and stakeholders.

UNESCO while inviting stakeholders in the region to join and participate in its newly launched Dynamic Coalition on Internet Universality Indicators, said that the Forum will hold panel discussion with emphasis on knowledge-sharing as well as an interactive session whereby the moderator will allow very short statements from speakers to trigger discussions.

The line-up for the panel discussion are: Chair of Information for All Programme, Ghana, Dorothy Gordon; UNESCO Officer in Dakar, Senegal, Elvis Michel Kenmoe, Benin; Alain Kiyindou, Université Bordeaux Montaigne, Niger and Intelligent User lnterfaces Research team leader, Development House, Ghana, Simon-Peter Kafui Aheto.

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Aboyeji, Pantami, Danbatta, Abdullahi, Toriola, 5 Others Make Worldex Top 10 Tech Leaders for Nigeria in 2021



Aboyeji Pantami Danbatta Abdullahi Toriola 5 Others Make Worldex Top 10 Tech Leaders for Nigeria in 2021, SiliconNigeria

Serial tech entrepreneur and Founder/CEO of Future Africa, Mr. Iyinoluwa Aboyeji; the CEO of Flutterwave, Mr. Olugbenga Agboola; the DG of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mr. Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, and the CEO of MTN Nigeria Plc, Mr. Karl Toriola, have been named, among six others, as the “Worldex Top 10 Tech Leaders” for Nigeria in 2021. 

The “Worldex Top 10 Tech Leaders” recognizes and honours the most influential men and women, in both the public and private sectors, who drive the growth of the ICT industry throughout Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Worldex (World Digital Exhibition) is a technology trade fair that seeks to link up SSA with the rest of the global technology community. The inaugural edition of the event is expected to be held in Abuja, FCT, Nigeria, in February 2023. 

These other six who were on the “Worldex Top 10 Tech Leaders” list for Nigeria for both 2020 and 2021 are the Federal Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, the Executive Vice Chairman of Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, the CEO of MainOne Cable Nigeria Limited, Ms. Funke Opeke, the Chairman of Zinox Technologies Limited, Mr. Leo Stan Ekeh, the Founder/CEO of Interswitch Group, Mr. Mitchell Elegbe, and the CEO of SystemSpecs Nigeria Limited, Mr. John Obaro.

The “s” list was first published in June/July 2020, featuring such leaders in eight countries: Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya, Ghana, Tanzania, Rwanda, Malawi and Botswana. In 2021, the list of countries will be expanded to 12, comprising leaders drawn from both public and private sectors.  

The list is compiled by the Business Intelligence Unit (BIC) of Alford Conferences Limited, the owner and producer of the annual Worlex. Contributions to the list were made by a few selected ICT journalists and tech bloggers drawn from several countries in the SSA region. SSA is the second most populated region of the world after Asia, with over 1 billion people. Majority of the youths in this region are digital natives. 

Over the past six years, many of these African youngsters have earned the respect and investment of notable venture capital (VC) firms in Europe and North America. In 2018, VC companies, especially from Europe, invested $1.63 billion in start-up companies founded by these young Africans, based mainly in Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. The figure rose to $2.02 billion in 2019.

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Business Metrics Plans Forum to Nip $2.6bn Telecom Capital Flights



Business Metrics Plans Forum to Nip $2.6bn Telecom Capital Flights, SiliconNigeria

Business Metrics, an online business and tech-focused newspaper, has introduced Policy Implementation Assisted Forum (PIAFo), a new dialogue platform for stakeholders to drive various policies in the country towards effective implementation.

According to the convener of the forum, PIAFo is designed in series and targeted at addressing policy implementation failure which is a major challenge in the administration of affairs across the various sectors that have direct bearing on the socio-economic wellbeing of the country.

The methodology deployed by PIAFo to achieve its goal derives from a multi-stakeholder engagement and dialogue whereby a policy is dissected and all parties from private to public sectors, who have a role to play in execution, are firstly identified and then brought together at the forum to digest the policy and how they key into it.

The first series of the forum, tagged PIAFo-001 is focused on National Policy for Promotion of Indigenous Content in the Nigerian Telecommunications Sectors, one of the latest policies in the Nigerian telecom industry launched recently by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The PIAFo-001, a virtual event, is slated for Thursday August 5, 2021 by 10:00 a.m. with the theme: National Policy for Promotion of Indigenous Content in the Nigerian Telecommunications Sector.

To lay a solid foundation for the dialogue, the Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, is expected to give a keynote address at the forum, while the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Professor Umar Garba Danbatta; the Director General of Nigerian Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi; and the Director General of the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion,  Dr. DanAzumi Mohammed Ibrahim, will be giving regulatory insights on the implementation of the policy.

Similarly, the novel event is also expected to see participation of Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA) and the Institute of Software Practitioners Organisation of Nigeria (iSPON), whose chiefs and members would be addressing the forum.

In his remarks, Omobayo Azeez, the Managing Editor of Business Metrics and Chairman, Organising Committee, PIAFo-001, assures that participations of stakeholders across the concerned sector has been secured to chart a way for the effective implementation of the policy which seeks to stem $2.6 billion annual capital flights in telecoms industry by promoting alternative solutions that come with ease of doing business.

According to him, the forthcoming forum combines the criticality of the telecoms sector as an enabler of the economy and that of promotion of local contents which is an economic catalyst to bridge policy implementation vacuum in Nigeria.

Azeez said, “The general impression expressed by people on daily basis that Nigeria is good at policy pronouncement but often fails in implementation is about to become a thing of the past. PIAFo is dedicated to stimulating implementation and tracking progress with measurable metrics.

“The policy execution failure that has been experienced over the years is ascribed to many factors such as poor awareness, shallow stakeholders’ engagements, lack of monitoring and poor periodic assessment to track progress.

“To change this narrative, PIAFo is equipped with strategic objectives to serve as a brainstorming platform for policy assimilation; to identify demands of government policies from individual stakeholders involved; to coordinate multi-stakeholder efforts towards achieving policy objectives; to ensure effective policy implementation and to assess implementation level of policies over time.”

To achieve an all-encompassing treatment of the policy, a nexus of topics derived from the theme of the forum would be discussed by managing directors and chief executive officers of MTN Nigeria, Pan African Towers, Globacom Nigeria, VDT Communications, Airtel Nigeria, MainOne Cables, IHS Nigeria Limited and Broadbase Communications Ltd.

Meanwhile, the objectives of the indigenous content promotion policy in focus are to create a framework for supporting indigenous telecom businesses to become world class service providers; to ensure compliance with existing regulatory guidelines for indigenous content; to highlight and promote indigenous capacities in the telecommunications sector; and to foster collaboration between global Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) engaged in the manufacturing of telecommunications equipment and indigenous players.

Others are to ensure strategic partnerships with relevant regulatory agencies to create joint efforts to promote indigenous content; to enable the indigenous telecom industry to contribute significantly towards the overall development of the telecom industry; and to encourage and incentivise the participation of indigenous telecom institutions in relevant Standards Development Organisations.

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Nigerian Academy of Engineering Honours NCC for Contribution to Economic Development



Nigerian Academy of Engineering Honours NCC for Contribution to Economic Development, SiliconNigeria

The Nigerian Academy of Engineering (NAE), one of the highest professional bodies in the engineering field in the country, has presented an award to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) in recognition and appreciation of its support of the activities of the academy towards enhancing economic development.

The NAE is a not-for-profit and non-governmental organisation established for the purpose of promoting excellence in technological and engineering training and practice to ensure the technological growth and economic development in Nigeria.

The Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta received the recognition award at the 2021 Academy Technology Dinner/Lecture organised by NAE at the Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos on Wednesday, June 23, 2021, which had the Minister of the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, as Special Guest of Honour. 

Danbatta is a Fellow of the Academy and has, since becoming the EVC of NCC in 2015, remarkably stepped up NCC’s engagements with the academia and other professional institutions in science and technology towards advancing the socio-economic development of Nigeria.

The EVC, who spoke with the media shortly after receiving the recognition, said NCC is delighted to have been recognised for the modest contribution to the activities of the Academy and to the advancement of the nation’s economic development.

“On behalf of the Board, Management and the entire staff of the Nigerian Communications Commission, I wish to express our appreciation to the Nigerian Academy of Engineering. We see this gesture as an acknowledgement of the little efforts we are making towards the progress of the NAE,” he said.

Danbatta also spoke about the various interventions the Commission has been making through its concerted initiatives such as the Digital Awareness Programme (DAP) for secondary schools and Advanced Digital Appreciation Programme for Tertiary Institutions (ADAPTI) for tertiary education across Nigeria.

President of NAE, Engr. Alex Ogedengbe, further appreciated the Commission for its consistency in supporting the Academy, especially since the coming on board of Prof. Danbatta as the country’s Chief telecoms regulator.

He thanked the NCC Management for supporting the objectives of the NAE, which he said, are “To promote excellence in and the advancement of science, engineering, technology and innovation for the development of the economy and humanity.”

According to him, the NAE also facilitates dissemination and exchange of ideas among members and other similar bodies and establishments.

The event which was attended in strict compliance with COVID-19 safety protocols, had Prof. Sam Adefila, as the Guest Speaker. Prof Adefila spoke on the technical theme of the annual lecture feature of the event: “H20, The Peculiar Features of Earth’s Most Abundant Compound.”

Fellows of the Academy are drawn from a broad spectrum of engineering discipline, occupation and geographical location and include very senior Nigerian and foreign engineering professionals, who have distinguished themselves in professional practice, business, academia and government.

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