The Minister of Communications Technology, Mr Adebayo Shittu, has identified ICT as the fastest growing sector of the Nigerian economy.
He says the sector has the potentials of generating more employment and wealth creation which various stakeholders in the sector can tap into.
The Minister stated this in his keynote address at the 4th meeting of the National Council On Communications Technology in Kaduna state, north-west Nigeria.
He also pointed out that the ICT sector can be re-engineered to expand the frontiers of its contribution towards facilitating Nigeria’s early exit from recessionary economies.
The meeting which was themed: ‘Information and Communication Technology as the focal point of Nigeria’s economic diversification’, was a strategy towards positioning the ICT sector as the focal point of the nation’s economy.
In the area of spectrum management, Mr Shittu announced that the Ministry of Communications had issued and renewed a total of 668 licenses between November 2015 and September 2016, generating about 500 million Naira as government revenue.
Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, on his part, tasked the ministry and other stakeholders to come up with strong polices that would promote ICT development in the country.
He expressed optimism that ICT is capable of bringing huge revenue to the country and creating job opportunities.
The Governor, however canvassed for a single regulatory body for the sector.
The National Council on Communications Technology acts as a consultative body for the governments at all levels in matters pertaining to ICT, with a view to achieving some degree of uniformity in the sector.
Present at the occasion were also commissioners of Science and Technology from the 36 states of the federation and other critical stakeholders.
The Minister used the occasion to announce efforts by the Federal Government to ensure that mobile telecoms service users are not being exploited by service providers, especially in the areas of unsolicited messages.
Goodwill messages were delivered by some key stakeholders at the meeting, including the Chairman Senate Committee on ICT, Senator Abdulfata Buhari and some commissioners.
Cross River State Commissioner for Science and Technology, Offu Aya, in a chat with Channels Television, explained some of the areas in which ICT has been applied in the state.
The National Council On Communication Technology is a forum for interaction of stakeholders in Information and Communication Technology in Nigeria.
Among other things, the council is set up to consider recommendations from the technical officials on ways to reposition ICT in all tiers of government in the country, as well as exploring emerging opportunities that would help to further diversify the economy.