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Data key to economic prosperity, fighting insecurity – Pantami


The Minister for Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, has identified the place of data in achieving economic prosperity and tackling Nigeria’s many security problems.


He explained that “datafication of objects or data transforms their purpose and turns the information into new forms of value”, noting that a digital economy has been widely accepted as the single most important driver of innovation, competitiveness and economic growth.

Pantami made this known when delivering the 29th Convocation lecture of the Federal University of Technology, Minna, Niger State with the theme: “Datafication of Society: Economic and Security Issues in Producing and Using Public and Private Data in Nigeria.”

The Minister stated that Nigeria was inching closer to a time that its wealth would be judged by digital resources and the innovation of Nigerians, highlighting the eight pillars of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) that were made known recently by President Muhammad Buhari had digital literacy and skills, solid infrastructure, service infrastructure, digital services development and promotion, soft infrastructure, among others.

“So, the NDEPS has a very strong data theme and datafication is an important aspect of the implementation across all the eight pillars.

Data is critical to the success of the digital economy and scholars now refer to data as the new oil as data drives the digital economy and the digital economy drives the growth of the traditional economy,” he said.

He adds that the academia and young innovative Nigerians have a key role to play in datafication to prosper the economy.

Meanwhile, Pantami had at an event to mark this year’s World Privacy Day emphasised the connection between data privacy with protection and inherent challenges of a digital economy.

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He says data is key to driving the digital economy for a digital Nigeria, adding that it is important that data subjects are assured of the protection of their data under the custody of the data collectors and keepers.

According to him, as data increasingly becomes the nexus of the modern economy, regulation by government and awareness by citizens against possible breaches and abuses have become important.

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Ihesiulo Grace

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