The Nigerian government has instructed all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in Nigeria to comply with the provisions of the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR).

In a circular letter with Ref No. SGF/OP/l/S.3/Xll/186, signed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha, the government noted that designate appropriate officers as their Data Protection Officers (DPOs) who will on regular basis advise management on data processing activities of their organization and ensure compliance with the provisions of the NDPR and all matters relating to the protection of the privacy, rights and freedom of data subjects.

Other high points of the circular letter are:

  • Forward the name and contact details of the DPOs to Nigeria Data Protection Bureau (NDPB) for documentation and requisite induction training;
  • Appoint licensed Data Protection Compliance Organizations (DPCOs) who will guide the MDAs through the compliance framework and file their annual reports with the NDPB;
  • Make appropriate budgetary provisions for the annual Data Protection Audit compliance process and capacity building of Data Protection Officers as well as other staff; and
  • On annual basis, file the report of their Data Protection Audit to the NDPB not later than the 30th day of March of every year.

The government said the implementation of the Circular is with immediate effect.

Meanwhile, the National Commissioner and CEO of Nigeria Data Protection Regulation, Dr. Vincent Olatunji has lauded Federal Government for taking this historic step towards advancing fundamental rights and freedoms of Nigerian citizens and residents, particularly in the area of privacy.

“As an agency of government, we are cheered by this development because it clearly demonstrates the preparedness of public sector organizations and functionaries in providing an enabling environment for the growth of our digital economy. With this circular, over 200 million Nigerian citizens now have additional references to call in aid in order to protect lives and livelihoods in a data-driven ecosystem.

The Bureau will continue to cooperate with stakeholders so that the numerous benefits of lawful data processing such as job and wealth creation can spread to all nooks and crannies of Nigeria.



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