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Nigeria calls for open, secure Internet across Africa

Internet Africa

The government of Nigeria has advised African countries to make access to the internet open and secure.

The country's Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, Dr. Bosun Tijani, who made the call at the the just-concluded Africa Internet Governance Forum in Abuja, said doing this would help in bridging the digital divide and creating innovative opportunities within the continent. He added that the administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is committed to engendering necessary collaborations and international dialogues to achieve these objectives.

The Minister, who addressed the forum virtually, said Nigeria, as the largest telecommunications market in Africa, is conscious of all the dynamics of emerging technologies around Internet usage and would continue to work with countries in Africa on different fronts to ensure that the Internet is effectively governed so its innumerable resources can be leveraged for citizens and nation's growth.

Emphasizing the need for collaboration among African countries, the Minister said:

  • “The need for our consistent collaboration to develop our economy collectively is preeminent in the agenda of the current administration in Nigeria. It is through this kind of forum that we can bridge the digital divides, enhance cybersecurity, ensure digital rights and foster innovation. It is, therefore, our collective duty to ensure that the Internet remains open, safe and beneficial for all,” Tijani told parliamentarians and other participants from Africa who attended the forum in Abuja.

The Minister encouraged all the stakeholders to prioritise a collaborative approach to creating policies and strategies that will shape the future of the Internet in Africa, the future that will reflect Africa’s shared values, aspirations and diversity. Tijani specially commended the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and other agencies that constituted the Local Organising Committee (LOG), on behalf of the Nigerian government as well as all sponsors, for a successful 2023 AfIGF.

Speaking during the opening and closing ceremony of the event, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Danbatta, provided insights on NCC's commitment to driving a secure Internet ecosystem in Nigeria through various regulatory initiatives. Danbatta stated that Nigeria has attained tremendous growth in broadband penetration, basic Internet usage, and voice subscriptions and recorded impressive contributions to the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

The NCC CEO said that, as Nigeria hosted this year’s edition of the AfIGF, the country was focused on sharing experiences with other sister nations in Africa as well as learning from the AfIGF parliamentarians from Africa who gathered at the forum to collectively drive the frontiers of the ideals of proper utilization of Internet resources to promote socio-economic development on the African continent.

Also speaking at the weeklong event, the Secretary of the African Parliamentary Network on Internet Governance, Honourable Samuel George of Ghana, called for free Internet “that is inclusive, safe and secured for all citizens of Africa.” He said this can only be achieved through collaborative effort by coming together to build an inclusive Africa.

  • “For Africa to be self-sufficient, it must create an enabling environment and laws and provide digital infrastructures for young innovators to strive. This will, in turn, promote indigenous and local content development in technological development,” George said.

This year’s edition of the AfIGF with the theme: “Transforming Africa’s Digital Landscape: Empowering Inclusion, Security and Innovation”, which took place at the Congress Hall of Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, provided yet another veritable platform for African countries to discuss germane issues that will pave the way for the development of a more robust digital economy in the continent.



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