The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has supported proposals for the establishment of Digital Innovation Hubs in the country.
Director-General of the Agency, Kashifu Inuwa stated this at the formal launch of the initiative by the Digital Transformation Centre (DTC) of the German International Cooperation (GIZ).
Delivering an address on the topic “Public, Private Partnerships: Drivers of Digital Innovation in Nigeria’’, Inuwa said “Digital innovation hubs are the surest way to help lift Nigerians out of poverty and support the government in its economic diversification efforts, through the creation of more Innovation-Driven Enterprises (IDEs)”,
With the investment already made by the federal government in revamping its digital economy subsector, Inuwa said that the NITDA, to complement this feat will support all innovations geared towards the digital economy.
He also identified the role of public-private partnerships (PPPs) in strengthening Nigeria’s digital economic transformation.
“PPPs are critical instruments for innovation in all sectors of the economy; they help governments become more inventive by creating a space outside the government structure that allows innovation to flourish.”
“They also help to inject a broader set of skills and talents, as well as a more diligent and responsive work culture into the government machinery and to create a solid foundation for innovative thinking and creativity”, he said.
However, he said that an enabling environment must be provided for PPPs to function as expected.
“the engagement of PPPs in Nigeria will require an enabling environment for dedicated public and private sector champions that address the challenges of digital infrastructure development head-on”.
“The Nigeria Public-Private Partnership Network (NPPPN) was established in 2011 through collaboration between the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Lagos State Public Private Partnership (PPP) office, and the Nigerian Infrastructure Advisory Facility (NIAF) to create a platform for all States (sub-nationals), Heads of PPP Units nationwide under the Chairmanship of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum,” he explained.
The forum was convened for stakeholders in the Nigerian innovation ecosystem to engage them in understanding the Digital Innovation Hub concept while also generating interest from prospective entrepreneurs and innovators.