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NITDA unveils plan to establish National IT Institute


Lagos -Mr Peter Jack, the Director General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), on Wednesday said that a plan was in the offing to establish a National Information Technology Institute.
Jack told the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos that the objective of the move was for government to advance the level of Information Technology (IT) in Nigeria.
He said that it was also to encourage entrepreneurship in the IT sector.
“The agency is working to partner with other stakeholders in the aspect of creating an institute of technology.
“We aim to create a body that would liaise with other institutes to create a centre of excellence for various aspects of information technology,’’ the NITDA director-general said.
Jack advised indigenous computer manufacturers to focus on entrepreneurship training, saying it would promote self-reliance among the populace.
He said the burden of training for staff and entrepreneurs should rest on the IT industries, adding that companies should also collaborate with academic institutions in this area.
According to him, industries’ partnership with academic institutions should involve creating vocational programmes that will certify people at various levels of study.
“I charge the stakeholders in the industry to develop a very robust and rigorous training programme that will certify people as engineers.
“We at NITDA will be very willing to support these programmes at polytechnic, university, technical and vocational levels.
“The certificate that will be issued should also be tailored to fit with the institutions of their choice.
“Every player in this industry must follow the part of certification, providing capacity for people in polytechnic and vocational schools to qualify them to stand on their own after their studies,’’ the NITDA director-general said..
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Jack said that there were still many untapped opportunities that Nigerians could benefit from internationally in the IT sector.
“People are really not aware of the level of opportunity that exists internationally.
“The foundations are a good point, in the likes of United Nations and its agencies, the Bill Gates Foundation and the Social Enterprise Fund.
“There are funds and funding opportunities at this level that can impact the lives of people at the community level, in terms of Information Communication Technology.’’
He said by virtue of the agency’s relationship with international development partners, it would continue to seek areas in which it could work with these partners to grow capacity at the community level.
Jack said this was the only way the industries could develop and sustain the quality expected in any organisation that wants to play at the global level. (NAN)

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