For Nigeria to attain full economic growth, financial efficiency, reduction in crime and corruption, she must embrace cashless initiative in every financial transaction, as currently being championed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
This was part of the resolution reached by the Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) at its 24th National Conference held in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, with the theme: “Towards a Cashless Nigeria: Tools and Strategies.”
In a communique jointly signed by its President and Chairman Conferences, Ademola Aladekomo and Professor Sola Aderounmu respectively, NCS strongly recommended that Nigerians flow along with the CBN initiative on cashless, while citing the case of the current spending on cash management by the CBN, which it said, was wasteful and unsustainable.
With the rising expenditure on currency production, replacement, distribution and vault management, and in line with the global trend, cashless society is imperative and inevitable, the communiqué said.
It however suggested that savings made from expenditure on cash management should be ploughed into Information and Communications Technology (ICT) infrastructural development and penetration in Nigeria.
Aladekomo however said that Nigeria must attain clean and stable public power supply, reliable network services and availability of access to infrastructure, in order to achieve the desired success of the cashless Nigeria initiative.
He said cashless economy remained a catalyst for innovation, local content development, and job creation, and called on government to support NCS and the Computer Professionals of Nigeria (CPN), in order to combine efforts to invigorate and accelerate manpower development in area of local software application and services developments. Such application, he said, should be localised in the various Nigeria languages, since it is capable of generating streams of income and will create wealth to the nation like Ireland and India. NCS commended the efforts of National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) under its current leadership for developing a central national database, multi-factor authentication system, enrolment and card issuing services, as well as identification and verification processes.
The computer professional body said the implementation of the unique identification number project of NIMC was crucial to the success of the cashless policy, and should be accelerated.
The conference also resolved that accelerating the progress and benefits of federal government transformation agenda, required the inclusion of ICT professionals at all board and project implementation levels of government initiatives.
NCS called on government at all levels to embrace information technology in all its activities, since it is the preferred and fastest growing industry in the world today, with the power to invigorate and actualise national visions as well as transform and enrich economies.
“Reliable studies estimate the global value of IT opportunities to be over $200 trillion, and the 2012 global IT spends is projected to exceed $1.6trillion.