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Digital literacy, skills essential for participation in digital economy—Prof Ajiya

Abuja—The President/CEO, Digital Bridge Institute (DBI), Engr. Prof Mohammed Ajiya has said digital literacy and skills are essential for participation in the digital economy.

He added that an adequate level of local capacity is however required for indigenous firms to provide ICT devices, software, data management, and other ICT services in the digital economy, including eventually exporting their products and services.

Ajiya stated this while delivering a keynote lecture on the topic: “Policy and strategy for effective digitalization of Nigeria’s economy,” on Wednesday at the Abuja 2022 conference of the Nigerian society of engineers (NSE) themed: “Advancing the frontiers of communication and digital economy in Nigeria.”

He said, “There is no doubt that the future is digital and the majority of our everyday activities have migrated online, either fully or partially including, work, collaboration, communication, learning, civic engagement, financial services, shopping, entertainment, social interactions, and more are increasingly being conducted either fully or partially online.

“This trend is only set to increase with the rise of 5G and emerging technologies including IoT, Blockchain, virtual and A
augmented reality, and AI, which will offer us even more ways to use digital technology.”

“The recognition of this fact led the Federal Government of Nigeria in 2019 to restructure the former Ministry of Communications into the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy, and to the development of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS), designed to reposition the Nigerian Economy to take advantage of the many opportunities that digital technologies provide.”

Further stressing the importance of digital literacy, Ajiya informed of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) intervention in the empowerment of Nigerians on digital literacy through the Advanced Digital Appreciation Programme for Tertiary institutions in Nigeria (ADAPTI).

He said the ADAPTI has led to the empowerment of over 100,000 participants. from tertiary institutions in Nigeria.

The DBI Boss further said Nigeria already has impressive building blocks in place for effective digitalization of the economy.

“All key enablers of the digital economy are covered extensively by various policies, guidelines, and regulations,” he said.

He however added that the success of the digital economy project hinges on continuity and follow-through of the policies in place.

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