Executive Vice Chairman of Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC), Dr. Eugene Juwah has said that Nigeria needs about N604 million investments to improve its Information and Communications Technology (ICT) in the bid to attain full development.
He said this in Awka at the zonal ICT Infrastructure Forum organized by Galaxy Backbone Plc, noted that the country’s immediate requirement for ICT facilities was enormous and required capital and time.
Juwah who was represented at the occasion by an executive commissioner in the commission and former Deputy Governor of Enugu State, Chief Okechukwu Itanyi further stated that recent study confirmed that Nigeria’s ICT industry was yet to mature sufficiently.
“Nigeria’s immediate requirement for ICT facilities is enormous and the required capital and time investment needed to complete a full deployment is daunting,” he said.
Furthermore, the NCC boss lamented that recent data showed that Nigeria unfortunately was not ranked among the top in the ICT sector in Africa, a development he said was abnormal.
The hosting Governor, Mr. Peter Obi in his remarks lamented that Nigeria was still behind in ICT development, stressing that what will move the nation faster to meet the required growth is ICT.
“If you build the physical infrastructure without the human infrastructure, you are wasting your time. We need to build a better future which must be based on ICT because its value is immeasurable,” Obi said.
The governor, however, said that Anambra State, knowing the times, have moved ahead to ensure that its schools are driven by ICT, adding that the state has concluded arrangements to distribute laptops to the 100 Microsoft Academy in the state with each having 50 laptops. In his welcome address, the Managing Director/CEO of Galaxy Backbone Plc,
Mr. Gerald Ilukwe enumerated various advantages of ICT, stressing that it gives training that could offer jobs and make people self-employed.
Noting that Anambra State was the first state to take advantage of his company’s package, he said that ICT centers were being commissioned in the state which were initiated as part of the company’s overreaching corporate objectives based on its mandate to create digital access for underserved communities and rural locations in Nigeria as a platform to leap-frog Nigeria into a 21st century knowledge society.
Also speaking to newsmen shortly after the forum, Ilukwe said that the forum was the first in the south east and was meant to avail the states various ways of using ICT in easing governance and generating revenue.