Connect with us


NITDA Unveils SRAP 2.0 @Omniverse Summit



Kindly share this post

Kashifu Inuwa, director general, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), has emphasized the pivotal role of collaboration with stakeholders in the technology ecosystem to achieve a resilience and prosperous digital transformation for Nigeria by unveiling the NITDA’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan 2.0.

He spoke at the Omniverse Summit, held at the Landmark Event Centre, Lagos.

Inuwa highlighted the necessity of shared goals, resources, and knowledge to make a lasting impact on Nigeria’s digital future.

“Our vision for Nigeria is to digitally empower the nation by thriving on innovation and fostering inclusive economic growth through technology,” Inuwa stated.

While discussing the pillars in the Strategic Road-map and Action Plan (2024-2027) SRAP 2.0, Inuwa stressed the importance of collaboration among the stakeholders.

According to the NITDA Director-General, the road-map focuses on eight strategic pillars, targeted at accelerating digital transformation of all critical sectors of the economy as directed by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

He maintained that all the pillars in the SRAP 2.0 resonate with the strategic pillars of Ministry of Communications, Innovations and Digital Economy blueprint tagged “Accelerating our Collective Prosperity through Technical Efficiency” which are Knowledge, Policy, Infrastructure, Innovation, entrepreneurship, and Capital, and Trade.

He revealed that the first pillar, fostering digital literacy and cultivating talent has an ambitious goal of achieving 70% digital literacy by 2027 through the implementation of National Digital Literacy Framework as well as developing technical talents which is being implemented through one of the Ministry’s initiatives “the 3 Million Technical Talent (3MTT)”, designed to address the impending global talent deficit and position Nigeria as a leader in technological expertise.

Inuwa noted that the second pillar is to build a robust technology research system, aimed at putting Nigeria’s at the 25 percentile in global ranking in research in six key areas of AI, IoT, Robotics, Additive Manufacturing, blockchain and UAVs.

The third pillar emphasises the need to strengthen policy implementation and legal framework, with all ecosystem stakeholders contributing to achieving national goals.

He said, “Promoting inclusive access to digital infrastructure and services forms the fourth pillar which aims at connecting the unconnected by investing in learning centers and innovation hubs across the country.”

“Strengthening Cybersecurity and enhancing digital trust is the fifth pillar. This addresses the importance of instilling confidence in digital platforms for its users,” he said.

He identified the sixth pillar as focusing on plans to nurture an innovative and entrepreneurial ecosystem, which will promote synergy in industry and an enabling platform for digital transformation.

“While the seventh pillar is to forge strategic partnerships, and collaborations with external stakeholders as evident with the active partnership NITDA is building with the Omniverse platform, the eight and last pillar of the SRAP is directed to cultivate a vibrant organizational culture and agile workforce within NITDA”. he added.

“We believe that by working together, we can transform Nigeria into a global digital powerhouse,” Inuwa declared.

He subsequently invited stakeholders to download the soft copy of the road-map, providing a QR code for easy access, and encouraged feedback to refine the document for collective success.

Inuwa assured the commitment of the government to create enabling policies for citizens to thrive.

According to him,“The aim is to position Nigeria among the top 25 in artificial intelligence, IoT, UAV, robotics, Blockchain, and additive manufacturing, propelling the nation into a prominent role in the global digital economy.”

The Omniverse Summit is targeted at driving the digital economy on the continent. The summit explores the narratives about the Africa and Africans, with a focus on how to regain control of these narratives to re-frame the future of our economies, societies, and geopolitics.

Obi Asika, the convener of the Omniverse Summit along with his team members, Charles Emembolu, Dr. Thwueba and Isioma Udeozo stated passionately during a panel session tagged “Why Omniverse? Explained that the Omniverse is a collaborative platform, which is designed to bring people together. They mentioned that one of the core objectives of the program was to bring different segments of the ecosystem like the academia, tech, startups, gaming people, music industry, film industry, television industry, the arts and arts culture among others together.

In their submission, they noted that the move is towards creating a platform for anyone to have a clear understanding into what is happening in Nigeria, Africa, and the world.

Mr. Will Stevens, the U.S Consul General, in his address affirmed that the dynamic digital innovation ecosystem in Nigeria has led to the creation of this crucial platform, emphasizing the nation’s role as Africa’s largest economy and democracy.

Mr. Williams stressed a paradigm shift in collaboration, moving from discussing what can be done for Africa to what can be achieved together. He added that the focus is to ensuring African nations have a significant voice in global policy discussions, particularly addressing shared challenges like climate change, food insecurity, and global pandemics.

He called for a permanent African representation in the UN Security Council underlines the need for African solutions to global problems, emphasizing collaboration on a worldwide scale.

He noted that Nigeria, as a key player in driving innovation, faces challenges such as safeguarding intellectual property and addressing exchange rate risks noting that, “the partnership between the U.S. and African tech startups is substantial, with around 60% of venture capital in Nigeria originating from the United States.”

“However, there is an expressed need to protect intellectual property locally and create laws to support startups, ensuring innovators can safeguard their creations within the country. The imperative is to foster collaboration that goes beyond geographical boundaries and promotes a collective effort to tackle shared global challenges,” he concluded.

Kindly share this post

Ugo Onwuaso is an ICT enthusiast. He believes technology should be used for general good. He holds a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from the Lagos state University. Dear Reader, Your support matters. But we believe that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. That is why, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and finance and how they affect lives. Our incisive and analytical view of how technology news affects the daily life help individuals and organizations make up their minds. Quality journalism costs money. Today, we're asking that you support us to do more. Kindly support our effort to deliver technology and finance journalism to everyone in the world. Donate as little as N1,000. Bank transfers can be made to: UBA Plc 1017156876 Communication Week Media Ltd


Secure Identity Alliance: OSIA Becomes Official ITU Standard



Kindly share this post

Secure Identity Alliance (SIA) has announced that its OSIA specification, has been recognized as international standard by the International Telecommunication Union’s Telecommunication Standardization Sector (ITU-T).

Secure Identity Alliance: OSIA Becomes Official ITU Standard

This milestone establishes OSIA as official ITU standard (ITU-T Recommendation) for the global infrastructure of information and communication technologies (ICT).

The specification that is now an ITU-T Recommendation is: ITU-T X.1281 – APIs for interoperability of identity management systems.

ITU-T is the standardization arm of ITU, the United Nations specialized agency for ICT.

The Secure Identity Alliance specifications were approved as official ITU-T Recommendations by ITU members including 193 countries and the world’s front-running ICT companies on 1st March 2024.

The new ITU-T Recommendation is under the responsibility of ITU’s standardization expert group for security, ITU-T Study Group 17.

“We are very proud that the OSIA specification is recognized as an international standard by ITU-T. This milestone demonstrates the maturity of OSIA and its potential to foster interoperability and promote fairness in the identity management systems market,” said Debora Comparin, chair of the OSIA Initiative.

Prof. Heung Youl Youm, chairman of ITU-T Study Group 17, said, “The recognition of the OSIA specification as an official ITU-T Recommendation underscores its critical contribution to the advancement of global ICT infrastructure. We are thrilled about the ongoing collaboration between ITU-T SG17 and the SIA, aimed at developing standards for secure identity management.”

“As Editor of the OSIA standard in the ITU-T Study Group 17 Q10, I am pleased to have contributed to this successful recommendation by the ITU,” said Abbie Barbir, rapporteur for ITU-T’s working group on ‘Identity management and telebiometrics architecture and mechanisms’ (Q10/17).

“The collaboration with the SIA continues on OSIA and other structuring initiatives and standards development.”

Engr Abisoye Coker-Odusote, CEO, National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Nigeria and chair of the OSIA Advisory Committee, said, “As the Chair of the OSIA Advisory Committee, comprised exclusively of government representatives, we take great pride in our five years of collaboration guiding the working group in the development of the OSIA specification. OSIA establishes equal marketplace conditions, fosters collaboration, and ensures product compatibility post-mergers and acquisitions.

The OSIA standardized interfaces drive innovation, enabling new local market models and reducing fraud within multiple ID systems.

Additionally, OSIA addresses integrator/vendor lock-in, allowing governments to maintain control over their identity systems and pursue national development agendas seamlessly.”





Kindly share this post
Continue Reading


Zipline Achieves One Millionth Delivery Milestone



Kindly share this post

Zipline, the leading force in drone logistics delivery, has reached a monumental achievement with its one-millionth delivery to customers, signifying a significant leap forward in the logistics delivery sector. This historic milestone was marked by the delivery of two bags of IV fluid from a Zipline distribution center in Ghana to a local health facility.

Renowned for its innovative approach to designing, building, and operating autonomous delivery drones, Zipline’s zero-emission technology has garnered acclaim, covering over 70 million commercial miles across four continents.

Backed by investments surpassing several millions of dollars from notable supporters like Sequoia Capital, a16z, and Google Ventures, Zipline has firmly established itself as a disruptive leader in the industry. CEO Keller Rinaudo emphasizes the company’s commitment to key markets such as healthcare, quick commerce, and food delivery, envisioning a future where Zipline achieves 1 million deliveries per day.

“The three areas where the incentive really makes the most sense today are health care, quick commerce, and food,” underscoring Zipline’s commitment to partnering with top brands and institutions to transform the future of logistics using autonomous drones –  Keller Rinaudo Cliffton.

In Africa, Zipline has made a profound impact, forging significant partnerships across the continent. In Ghana alone, which accounts for about 54% of the one-millionth delivery milestone, Zipline’s collaboration with the government and health ministry has been pivotal. Since its inception, Zipline has completed over 540,000 drone delivery flights across Ghana, encompassing the delivery of crucial supplies, including 3,566,500 units of vaccines, 2,825,210 units of medical products, 14,807 units of blood products, and 18,289 units of animal health products. These deliveries have directly impacted the lives of over 17 million Ghanaians across 13 regions, saving 6,014 lives through emergency deliveries, including blood products and snake antivenom since 2019.

Beyond mere statistics, the company has facilitated the delivery of 12.2 million vaccine doses, including 2.8 million Covid-19 vaccines, leading to a 21% increase in vaccination coverage and a 44% reduction in missed opportunities to vaccinate in Ghana. These efforts have potentially saved 727 lives due to increased vaccination coverage. Additionally, Zipline’s infrastructure expansion in Ghana, with six distribution centers strategically located across the country, has enabled swift and efficient on-demand drone delivery services.

Not only this, the technology has facilitated the vaccination of 104,000 cattle against Anthrax in northern Ghana, safeguarding both human and animal lives. Such interventions have also extended to the agricultural sector, where 10.4 million doses of poultry vaccines have been delivered to poultry farmers nationwide, combating diseases such as Newcastle disease, Fowl pox, and Gumboro.

But Zipline’s impact in Africa extends far beyond Ghana’s borders. Operating in Rwanda, Kenya, Côte D’Ivoire, and Nigeria, the company has become a beacon of hope for healthcare accessibility and disease prevention. In Rwanda, Zipline serves as a lifeline, delivering 75% of the country’s blood supply outside of Kigali, drastically reducing maternal mortality rates due to postpartum hemorrhage by 88%. Additionally, the company’s deliveries of agricultural products have elevated farmers’ fertility rates by 10% compared to the national average.

In Kenya, Zipline’s collaborations with the Elton John AIDS Foundation have facilitated the delivery of HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment products, empowering individuals to manage their health effectively. Similarly, in Nigeria, Zipline’s expansive coverage encompasses over 500 health facilities in Kaduna, more than 350 in Cross River State, and 200 in Bayelsa. Teaming up with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, Zipline focuses on reaching children in remote regions, ensuring equitable access to life-saving immunizations.

Zipline’s adaptive approach and tailored delivery services reflect its commitment to meeting the diverse needs of populations and sectors. The achievement of the one millionth delivery milestone underscores its dedication to enhancing healthcare outcomes and addressing societal needs across Africa. As Zipline continues to innovate and expand its reach, it is poised to shape the future of healthcare delivery on the continent and beyond.




Kindly share this post
Continue Reading


Telcos Record N27Bn Loss from Damaged Fibre Cables



Kindly share this post

Repairs and revenue losses from damaged cables are estimated to have cost Nigeria’s telecom industry almost N27bn ($23m) in 2023, according to documents obtained by Bloomberg.

Telcos Record N27Bn Loss from Damaged Fibre Cables

MTN Nigeria, the biggest wireless operator in Africa’s most-populous nation, and Airtel Africa Plc bore the brunt of the costs, the documents show.

MTN suffered more than 6,000 cuts on its fiber cable last year, the documents show.

On Feb. 28, a cut in its network in three different locations by a road construction firm, an oil serving company, and someone burning rubbish in a manhole meant customers faced more than five hours of data and voice outages.

The operator relocated 2,500 kilometers (1,553 miles) of vulnerable fiber cables between 2022 and 2023, at a cost of more than N11bn —enough to build 870 kilometers of new fiber lines in areas without coverage.

Broadband fibre optic cables form the backbone of modern communication infrastructure, enabling the high-speed data transmission that underpins a wide range of personal, business, and societal activities.

On several occasions, the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the industry regulator, has acknowledged this challenge and expressed willingness to work on measures to address it.

These measures include stricter regulations to deter vandalism and improved collaboration between telcos and government agencies responsible for construction activities.

According to the NCC, the telecom sector will make up more than a fifth of the country’s gross domestic product by the end of 2027, up from 13.5 per cent in the third quarter of last year.

Kindly share this post
Continue Reading