In its continuous effort to institutionalise Digitalisation Programmes particularly to equip Federal Public Institutions (FPIs) with various digital skills, the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), has concluded its organised three-week Capacity Building Programme for Staff of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), Military and Paramilitary on Digital Literacy, Cyber Security and Cloud Computing.
The training is aimed at engaging civil servants to actively participate in the Global Digital Economy space towards the realisation and successful implementation of Federal Government technology-driven initiatives.
Speaking at the closing ceremony which took place at the e-Government Training Centre in Kubwa, the Director-General, NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa, CCIE, who was represented by Director IT Infrastructure Solutions, Dr Usman Gambo Abdullahi, stated that Digital Transformation in the public service is an integral part to deliver high-quality service to citizens.
He said, “Digital Literacy and Skills as you may be aware, is the second pillar of National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS), which provides policy backing for massive training of Nigerians from all walks of life in order to enable them to become digitally literate.”
Inuwa noted that the objectives set out for the programme were fully realised due to the reports and testimonies the Agency has been getting from the supervisors and participants, adding that “the class attendance in both the virtual and physical training have been phenomenal with high-level participation.”
He emphasised that digital technologies are changing the world at a faster pace than previously experienced waves of technological innovation, and are reshaping and introducing new business models and sectors.
He also re-echoed the need to have a digitally literate workforce, stressing that Nigeria must succeed in accelerating the growth and modernisation of her economy and governance.
Inuwa said, NITDA, as a forward-looking organisation, is aware of the relevance of civil servants in delivering government programmes, and the efforts of the present administration cannot be completed without involving civil servants, the military and the paramilitary, affirming that the MDAs are central to the implementation of the Federal Government’s digitalisation.
To actualise e-Government digital initiatives, Inuwa said NITDA had to set up Digital Transformation Technical Working Groups (DTTWGs) in FPIs whose members are meant to drive down the programmes at different levels of government.
He recalled that, so far, the members of DTTWGs for 200 Federal Public Institutions have been trained and another batch of 200 is to be trained.
“We in NITDA, have supported FPIs in terms of tools and training. We are already collaborating and will always be willing to partner with stakeholders to support our economic diversification and sustainability plan for the country”, the DG said.
While imploring the participants to partake fully and transfer the knowledge gained at the end of the training to their colleagues who could not make it to the training, the NITDA Boss pledged the Agency’s unflinching determination toward achieving the benchmark of 95 per cent Digital Literacy by the year 2030.
In his remarks, the Head of IT Professional Development and Outreach Unit, NITDA, Dr Ahmad Yusuf Tambuwal gave an overview of the capacity-building programme, saying that participants of the two-batch training were drawn from 40 MDAs (20 organisations in-person, 20 virtually), military and paramilitary bodies.
He noted that upskilling the 100 participating members will help Nigeria to catch up with the rest of the world in the area of digitisation, job creation, technology adaptation and deployment in the workplace.
Tambuwal expresses hope that both batches, each with 50 participants, will seize the opportunity to effectively learn and utilise the knowledge gained to achieve the sole aim of the initiative.
One of the participants, Dr Keneth Okereafor from the National Health Insurance Authority, thanked NITDA for organising the training and noted that civil servants need to upscale their digital skills, particularly because of existing realities instigated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Having participated in this programme, we are very grateful that our skills have been brushed. We are confident that we are going back to offices with renewed skills, and all courtesy of NITDA,” he added.
While expressing his appreciation to NITDA, Mr Edward Samuel, a staff of the National Orientation Agency (NOA) said, “the Capacity Building Training has exposed us to quite a lot of things, before now, I never knew that whatever I want to do in the office, I can use these kinds of stuff to do it.
“Digital literacy helps us to organise all the data and information we use in various offices. After organising this data, there is a need for the public to access it, and cloud computing has made it easy for us to be able to carry this information and upload it for people to access,” he said.