" ITREALMS: Soludo: Solidifying ICT base in Anambra - ITREALMS

Monday, February 12, 2024

Soludo: Solidifying ICT base in Anambra - ITREALMS

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REMMY NWEKE examines recent developments in the ICT sector in Anambra State and what must be done to improve and sustain the winning magic.
Soludo: Solidifying ICT base in Anambra - ITREALMS
Preamble:
For most Nigerians and people of Anambra State, the first time they seem to have heard of Prof. Charles Chukwuma Soludo in the limelight was when he got the nickname 'Soludo Solution' as the governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) some 20 years ago.
Soludo as Professor of Economics and banker, has since metamorphosed into Nigerian politician and current governor of Anambra State, since March 17, 2022 while located in Awka as state capital, with the motto 'Light of the nation.' Anambra is located in the southeastern region of the country. Anambra State was created on 27 August 1991 by then Military President, General Ibrahim Babangida; Anambra bounders Delta State to the west, Imo State and Rivers State to the south, Enugu State to the east and Kogi State to the north.

Obviously in efforts to shine the light on the nation that Anambra clinched some four awards at the just concluded 11th edition of the National Council on Communication, Innovation and Digital Economy (NCCIDE) meeting held at the Coronation Hall, Kano State Government House, between Monday, 22nd to Friday 26th, January 2024.

Four tech-awards @NCCIDE'24:
By close of session on Thursday, January 25, 2024, Anambra State was adjudged winner of four out of all the awards the 2024 NCCIDE. 
Soludo: Solidifying ICT base in Anambra - ITREALMS
These comprised the overall winner as the 'Best State in Digital Technology Development,' first position 'Best State in Digital Infrastructure Technology Development', first runner-up in 'e-Government Implementation', and first runner-up in 'Digital Technology Human Capital Development.'

Presided over by the Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy, Dr. Bosun Tijani and hosted by the Kano State Governor, Engr Abba Kabir Yusuf, no doubt, the 2024 NCCIDE brought some spotlights on Anambra.

Leveraging ICT in governance:
In his reaction immediately after receiving all the awards on behalf of state government, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (MD/CEO), Anambra State ICT Agency, Chukwuemeka Fred Agbata (CFA) attributed them to the vision of the Mr. Governor, Prof Charles Chukwuma Soludo, which is to build a liveable and prosperous smart mega city, anchored massively on leveraging technologies and digital innovation.

"These awards, are testament to Anambra's commitment to excellence, innovation, and progress in the digital realm," he said, stressing that the first prize, which is the overall winner as the 'Best State in Digital Technology Development' made Anambra to stand tall as the undisputed overall winner, scoring the highest number of points in all categories, showcasing its comprehensive dedication to advancing the state in the digital landscape and was presented by the Kano State Governor, Engr Abba Kabir Yusuf.

Agbata also said that the second prize received by the state during award session, was the first position as 'Best State in Digital Infrastructure Technology Development' which recognized Anambra as the leading state in ICT infrastructure development, following the full implementation of the Zero Right Of Way (RoW) policy, implementation of an Internet Exchange Point; all emphasizing the state’s commitment to building a robust foundation for the prosperity of its people, using technology and was presented by the Minister of CIDE, Dr. Bosun Tijani.

For the third prize, Agbata said was as the first runner-up in 'e-Government Implementation' emphasising that Anambra's innovative e-government initiatives earned it this prize and underscored the state's effective use of technology in governance as the award was presented by the Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi.

Whereas the fourth prize came as the first runner-up in 'Digital Technology Human Capital Development' which Agbata said reinforced the state’s commitment to building a digitally-skilled and knowledgeable workforce and society in general and was presented by the Kano State, Commissioner for Science, Technology and Innovation, Alhaji Mohammed Othman.

ITREALMS gathered that Anambra's awe-inspiring outing was heralded by presentation by Dr. Florence Idigo, a Director in the State ICT Agency, at the opening ceremony which attracted commendations from industry experts and obviously reflected in their scoring eventually.

Speaking farther, Agbata profoundly appreciated Mr. Governor, Prof. Soludo, for creating the enabling environment and a vision which guides the agency in line with the ‘Everything Technology, Technology Everywhere’ mantra.

Dedicated to Ndi Anambra:
While dedicating the awards to Ndi Anambra, Agbata singled out the team at ICT agency as well as the co-operation and collaboration of the entire ‘Solution Team’ for their hard work and dedication to Mr. Governor's vision. Maintaining that "This achievement no doubt reflects our unwavering commitment to technological advancement and the transformative journey we are championing in Anambra State.”

Adapting the Soludo model:
Further reactions from industry stakeholders suggested positive and commendable efforts so far. Thus, for the man known as oracle of the Information Technology (IT) industry in Nigeria, Chief Chris Uwaje “Anambra State has in practical terms, demystified and demonstrated that to conquer Technology and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) is no longer a rocket science.”

Uwaje also advised that the Nigerian nation should adopt the Anambra tech-model and strategic framework as actionable panacea to leapfrog Nigeria/Africa into the ferociously emerging digital knowledge Olympiad or perish?

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And to keep this light of the nation on, there is absolute need for the Soludo-led Anambra State to work on insecurity reports emerging from the state including the reported murder and dumped variously of a couple and two brothers, instigation of arrests of some seven Anambra young men and taken to Enugu, Enugu State in the name of battle for a lost Igwe-feud in a neighbouring town of Awba-Ofemili and frequent attacks on villagers at border towns like Ukpor, to re-affirm the confidence of investors across all sectors of the economy, even deploying ICT deeply to aid security operatives so as to make Anambra State safer.

Only then can Soludu solidify ICT base in the light of nation's state.



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