For a country like Nigeria to effectively leverage digital economy, the country must give priority to the digital literacy of its citizens, the Executive Vice-Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof. Umar Danbatta has posited.
Prof. Danbatta, while delivering the first Annual Lecture of the Bichi Emirate titled, “Digital Literacy as a Veritable Tool for Social and Economic Transformation” in Bichi, Kano State, believes that digital literacy provides the confidence required by individual citizens to utilise digital contents and tools.
While challenging actors in both public and private sectors to key into the Annual Lecture, Danbatta added that digital literacy helps citizens to effectively collaborate in creating digital content and becoming innovative problem-solvers within their socio-economic ecosystem.
Technological changes have now assumed an unprecedented dimension in pace, scope and depth of impact. Thus, there is a need for Nigeria to prioritise digital literacy as this is the surest path for Nigeria in her quest for economic diversification, especially the elevation of 100 million Nigerians out of poverty,” he said.
Meanwhile, in demonstration of its recognition of the importance of digital literacy, Danbatta said that the NCC has, over the years, implemented various programmes to support the adoption and application of digital skills in Nigeria.
The programmes, according to him, not only provide the necessary digital tools but also support the provision of digital infrastructure, training, connectivity and other incentives to facilitate the development of digital literacy skills.
Speaking specifically on NCC’s interventions in Bichi Emirate, Danbatta said that, of the eight local government areas that constitute the Emirate, the Commission has, through the USPF, identified about 1,900 square kilometers of land, populated by 462,222 individuals as unserved.