DG NIMC Receives Two Awards

……Says digital inclusion and access to education are keys to building a digital society

The Director General/Chief Executive Officer, NIMC, Engr. Aliyu A has received the Institutional Partner Award in Science and Communication conferred on NIMC and a personal Award of Excellence in Leadership at the 5th International Conference on Communication and Development in Africa, themed: Change Management and Data-Driven Strategic Engagement for Development held at the Assembly Hall, Nasarawa State University, Keffi, Nasarawa State.

According to a press release signed by the NIMC spokesperson, Kayode Adegoke said that Director General/CEO, of National Identity Management Commission, Engr. Aliyu A. Aziz, who delivered the keynote address at the Institute Of Strategic And Development Communication (ISDEVCOM) Nasarawa State University conference said that it is a known fact that no meaningful transformation, (even digital transformation) can occur without an effective change management strategy.

“Likewise, data is known as a very critical component of any digital transformation. Data is information, while good data provides indisputable evidence. To create a valuable entity that drives profitable activity; data must also be broken down and analyzed for it to have value.

“Leaders and organizations have to take advantage of data-driven decision-making to succeed. We have to adopt practices that allow us to benefit from the growth opportunities data offers, Engr. Aliyu Aziz said.

He further said that building a data-driven strategy requires a significant amount of dedication, energy and focus across the entire organization. Apart from huge investments in resources, a culture change is very critical. Committing to data driven decision making that comes from the top will inspire the rest of the organization to realize how important data is for necessary business transformation. The level of technological advancement and the data driven solutions has shown us that digital innovation is no longer an option but an essential tool for re-invention and effectiveness that ensures all-around growth and prosperity for businesses, individuals and nations.

“Consequently, it is no longer news that inadequate infrastructure has greatly hindered the adoption of a technologically driven society, and this continues to be a major barrier to our country’s realization of its full economic growth potential backed by data and technological innovation.

“Developing countries like Nigeria are still confronted with peculiar difficulties bothering sustainability and progress on all frontiers. There are drawbacks that have impacted this promising future of a developed, secure and sustainable nation. Some of these drawbacks are in the area of building new and maintaining the challenging infrastructure; 24×7 power supply and connectivity; providing access to basic education and equal access to technology; digitilization and automation of government service delivery; successful implementation of a sustainable digital identity program amongst many others.

“Evidence has shown that the ability to uniquely identify individuals and reliably authenticate their identity is a foundational enabler of progress toward achieving many other sustainable development goals of the United Nations.

“In essence, to improve the lives of our people and support stronger communities, we need a digital government, a digital society and a digital economy for the digital transformation of our nation to happen, Engr. Aliyu Aziz said.

He reiterated that this must be a nation-wide coordinated approach to not only digitize the nation but it must be a deliberate and intentional effort to collaborate with every stakeholder, and to also re-organize administration and governance as well as government-to-citizen engagements; government-to-business interactions, etc. Significant investment in a practicable and sustainable structure that will power the digital economy is necessary for the creation of a strong and viable digital infrastructure.

“With the increased rate of digital services and e-commerce, the digital economy has become the fulcrum of the ICT world; and many governments, big and small Corporations have adopted this digital innovation as the most effective route for development. Both Government and private sector organizations are hereby tasked to invest in infrastructure development, shared open platforms and jointly work towards creating an enabling environment for businesses and the citizenry to learn, develop, grow, thrive and become successful.

“I believe Nigeria is not left out of this considering the significant progress made in the development of the Nigeria Digital Economy Strategy as well as efforts made in driving implementation by our dynamic Honourable Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), Engr. Aliyu Aziz said.

Engr. Aliyu Aziz further said that in pursuit for a digital Nigeria, the Federal Government of Nigeria plan to empower individuals especially the youth to cultivate and harness their talents, as well as arm themselves with the latest digital technologies needed to realize the aspirations and desires of our nation.

“To support this, our schools must teach how to create the technology of the future, the government must strive to equip individuals with up-to-date knowledge and skills to exploit technology, we must create and develop a cyber-smart workforce that fully understands how to secure the systems and platforms and make smart decisions.

“The time has come for the government and businesses to invest in talent hunting, skills and capacity development for us to achieve positive growth in our nation and bring about sustainability of the ever growing and changing socio-economic landscape.

“By the same token, the Federal Government has a strong focus of leveraging ICT to directly target the full range of development objectives; extend the reach of the social, economic and political reforms the nation is pursuing now; and support all government efforts and strategies towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

”Government and policy makers are increasingly taking responsibility for technology; championing the digital transformation of our society and accelerating the process of integrating technologies in our collective efforts to improve lives.

“At the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC); we provide identity registration, issue a unique Identity token and seamlessly integrate with both Public and Private organisations to meet citizen’s operational needs of verifying/authenticating their identities to facilitate a transparent and effective service delivery.

“The Commission continues to pride itself with rich experience in providing assured and unique identification to all Nigerians and Legal Residents. This is evident with the over 97 Million Enrolment figures in the National Identity Database as well as over 6,000 active enrolment points (centres) scattered within the country and in the Diaspora.

“The Commission takes Identity Management seriously and this is evident in our certifications and conformance to international best practices such as the ISO certifications, etc.

He also emphasized that strategic engagement with all stakeholders is also critical to the sustainability and relevance of a viable Identity Management System and this has been one of the key things that necessitated our collaboration with the Nasarawa State University and my acceptance to give this keynote speech today.

“NIMC as a an organization is always ready and willing to collaborate with all stakeholders of like minds to continually educate and enlighten on the digital ID program as well as provide an all-inclusive and robust digital identity for all in a secure environment.

“More importantly, the alliance of all stakeholders – young and old is crucial as we seek to bring transformative development in our nation through the use of emerging technologies and advance the realization of our common goal to greatness.

In conclusion, Engr. Aliyu Aziz said that digital inclusion and access to education are keys to building a digital society, a stronger and more prosperous nation.

“Through greater focus and use of data, computing and connectivity, we can transform the public and private sector to better serve the people and businesses. This will reposition us to facilitate the transition to a data-driven, effective, transformed and sustainable nation, he concluded.