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NCS to renew focus on rural ICT penetration, indigenous software growth


SoftwareNOT satisfied at Nigeria’s over 100 per cent teledensityrate, Nigeria Computer Society (NCS) has marshalled out plans to deepen Information and Communications Technology (ICT growth in the country, especially in the rural areas.
With a two year plan (2015 to 2017), NCS, under its new leadership, led by Prof. Sola Aderounmu, said it will also be focusing on increasing the use of indigenous software in the country.
Aderounmu, who was elected in Akure Ondo state last month, at NCS yearly conference, as the 13th president of the society, said he is going to be more critical about software development in Nigeria.
Speaking in Lagos, at the weekend, at a dinner organized in his honour by a former president of NCS, Sir, Demola Aladekomo, the former Managing Director of Chams Plc, Aderounmu, who is also the Director of ICT, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun state, said the society under him will seriously engaged the Federal government to urgently push for comprehensive broadband access all over the country; roll out, implement and monitor local content policy to encourage Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to patronize indigenous software and hardware.
With part of his agenda aimed at ensuring Nigeria becomes Africa’s IT hub, Aderounmu said the society will also be engaging governments at other levels to establish IT parks through the use of Public Private Partnership mechanism, which will also see that digital centres are established in all the 774 local government areas.
Also, he said he will ensure that critical stakeholders collaborate with NCS in pushing the details and implications of the cybercrime Act into the public domain.
To achieve all he planned, the new NCS president said the society will employ five strategies which are visisting and meetings; writing; speaking; lobbying (FGN, National Assembly) and collaborate with agencies (NITDA, CPN, MOCT).
Aderounmu said the leadership NCS will remain committed to its goals and statutes which include uplifting the standards of the profession, safeguarding the interest of members, stressing that by doing so, the society will find its tasks easier, relations improved, and achievements and contributions to the growth and development of Nigeria enhanced.
In his address, Aladekomo, urged members to be vocal in scheme of IT development in the country. He called on members to make themselves relevant in the push for ICT enabled economy.
“Members of the society must ensure that they are relevant in the scheme of things in the country, as far as ICT is concern. We need to look at where technology is going and contribute significantly to aid the country’s growth”, he stated.
Meanwhile, the NCS has expressed support for the recent charge by President Muhammadu Buhari that MDAs that collect biometric data to harmonise the collection and use instead of replicating efforts.
According to the society, this directive by Mr. President is not only welcome but an imperative one considering the huge cost implication biometric exercises have caused taxpayers in the past especially in terms of cost of data acquisition, cost of personnel, cost of storage of acquired data and cost of making such data available.
It stressed that this is in addition to the general inconveniences to citizens who repeatedly have to queue long hours for registration.
“Therefore it delights us as a Society that this cooperative model of data acquisition but vested in one agency of government is being embraced. It is a right and fundamental step towards a true e-government society and will assist in the fight against crimes when agencies drew data from the same database”, NCS stated.

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