FG Urges States to Establish Digital Economy Ministries
Oghenevwede Ohwovoriole in Abuja
The federal government has urged the 36 states of the federation to establish ministries of digital economy in their respective jurisdictions.
The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami gave the admonition in an interview with journalists on the sidelines of the inaugural meeting of the Presidential Council on Digital Economy and E-government (PCDEE), in Abuja.
According to him the federal government’s advice for states to set up such ministries was to ensure the seamless implementation of the National Digital Economy Plan (NDEP).
The minister said: “The council proposed establishing ministry of digital economy in our states where the activities at the national level can be cascaded and implemented by our various states.
“With the accommodation of our sub-nationals and governors, I believe so many good things will come out of the sector.
“The secretariat has been directed to come up with a framework for the digital economy that can be implemented in our states. Many states have good initiatives on digital economy. However, there is lack of harmonisation to the activities. So, a framework is going to be developed, so that our sub-nationals will play their own role and federal government will continue to provide intervention where necessary.”
The Governor of Imo State and members of the PCDEE, Hope Ozordima promised to create a ministries of digital economy as soon as they return to their respective states.
Uzodimma noted that part of the assignment given to the secretariat was to develop a framework that would enable the states align properly with the mandate of the Digital Economy Policy.
Another member of the PCDEE and Governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, said he was happy that there was now a council in place to direct the states on the implementation of the national digital policy.
Obaseki stated: “I am glad that we finally have a council in this country that will set a direction on the digital economy as you know the world is about digitalisation and technology.
“For us in the states particularly in Edo state we have already initiated lots of initiatives and actions. As you know, for instance, Edo State educational platform runs on technology where all our 15,000 teachers have hand-held devices.
“We are implementing technology in our primary health care centres. We have technology hubs but we are doing it on our own .It is not connected or aligned with what is happening at the national so the Council essentially helps align the different initiatives from different states across the country so that we can reduce the waste that comes with the non-alignment and also gain momentum and speed in terms of implementing our digital strategy as a country.”
The Minister of Trade and Investment, Adeniyi Adebayo, said they were in collaboration with the ministry and other agencies to promote Small Medium Entrepreneurs (SMEs).”