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VON Director-General Inaugurates In-House Digital Transformation Group

Voice of Nigeria: The Director-General of Voice of Nigeria, Mr Osita Okechukwu has inaugurated the VON In-House Digital Transformation Technical Working Group (VON DT-TWG).

The VON DT-TWG was established following a directive by President Muhammadu Buhari vide a letter from the National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA on 10th February 2020.

Mr Okechukwu thanked the NITDA for their previous assistance to Voice of Nigeria (VON) and further appealed for their continued support and collaboration with the Corporation in order to actualize its mandate, being the Federal Government Agency responsible for the implementation of the policy.

He said the Digital Transformation would ensure Nigeria attained its development objectives despite the challenges posed by the COVID 19 pandemic.

The Director-General also emphasized on the fourth revolution, which is the digital revolution and digital economy.

The VON In-House DT-TWG is made up of seven members as constituted, and they include: Hajia Sani, Director, Digital Media /Chairperson, Aliyu N. Othman – News Directorate, Rafat Salami – Digital Media Department, Mohammed Ashafa – Information Technology Department, Shuaibu Nasir AbdurRahman – Programmes Directorates, Feyisayo Damilola Oguneye – Procurement Department and Tamarakro Brinemugha – Strategic Planning and Corporate Development Department/Secretary.

He accordingly urged the seven (7) member Committee to step up their efforts as NITDA would assist the Corporation based on a feasible work plan that will make their policy direction of government easy.

The Director-General also observed that the COVID-19 pandemic had exposed Nigeria’s Public Sector with the fact that Government activities could be carried out with few personnels

He, therefore, urged staff of the Corporation to be innovative if they must remain relevant in a digital world

The Director-General also emphasized on the pertinent need for training on digital transformation with a call on the Director Training, Mr Ben Shemang to collaborate with the VON team.

Members of the VON DT-TWG were further directed by the Director-General to carry everyone along, while urging staff to key into the policy, so as not to be left out.

To this effect, the Committee was advised to identify relevant areas of needs to enable VON to get sufficient support from the NITDA digital transformation agenda in line with President Mohammadu’s development programmes for Nigeria

In her opening speech, the Director, Digital Media and Chairperson of VON In-House DT-TWG, Hajia Sani said the Group was established to strategically and cohesively coordinate and implement the National e-Govt Master Plan (NeGMP), National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) and digital transformation-related activities in the public sector at the Federal level.

E-GOVERNMENT INITIATIVES

The Chairperson of VON DT-TWG, Hajia Sani said that the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy had set up four key goals to drive the adoption of E-Government across all Ministries, Departments and Agencies, namely: connected government, informed citizenry, open data, and open government partnership, while leveraging on technology advances to initiate projects that will ensure citizens and businesses have easy access to government services.

These initiatives are prioritized to drive the adoption of e-government across the MDAs, which will turn improve service delivery, drive transparency, accountability and good governance.

The following are thus the core initiatives being implemented by the E-Government Department:

“National E-Government Master Plan: This is a roadmap for the adoption of e-Government best practices, by all Federal Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) developed in collaboration with the Government of Korea. To further promulgate the national importance of e-governance in Nigeria, in line with the government’s direction of leveraging technology for public service productivity; the department is responsible for the wide-scale implementation of the plan which will accomplish the full transformation of government transactions; improve the experience of citizens and businesses transacting with the government by simplifying the services, increase citizens engagement and drive transparency.

“Government Service Portal (Gsp): This is a platform (services.gov.ng) which aims to provide citizens, businesses and foreigners with easy access to various government services through a one-stop government portal. This has improved government processes, saves citizen’s travel time to government offices, and ensures round-the-clock access to government services, thereby revolutionizing the efficiency, convenience, and effectiveness with which public services are delivered.

“Government Contact Centre (GCC): This is a platform that allows citizens (irrespective of their location, literacy level or language) to get access to government services/information through calls. Focus is on citizen orientation and simplicity, as they can communicate with the administration in a convenient, simple, electronic and barrier-free. This initiative has generated employment, as well as, increased the participation of citizens in public sector activities as it encourages them to contribute their ideas and give feedback to the Government.

“Open Data Portal: An online platform (data.gov.ng) where non-sensitive data sent from government MDAs are routinely made available to the public. This increases Government’s ability to ensure transparency and inclusion of the general public in its service delivery as information released can be used for decision making by citizens and businesses’

“Electronic Document Management System (EDMS): The government is not relenting in efforts to deepen application of ICT in all public endeavours, hence the initiative to move all its documents online (digitization). The benefits of an EDMS include increased information security, reduced cost, business processes automation and improved access to information which achieves the aim of leveraging technology to improve public service productivity.

“The E-Government Capacity Building Program: This is aimed at establishing the foundation for the sustainable development and applications of E-governance across all sectors. More than 2000 public servants have been trained, at federal and regional levels, with focus on institutional transformation and human resources development in this continuous service wide training program.

“The National E-Health Strategic Frame Work: This was developed in conjunction with the Federal Ministry of Health as ICT has been identified as a key enabler to achieve the desired improvements in the country’s health care delivery. It enhances the quality of care, reduces operating and administrative cost, facilitate faster access to health information, increases communication through the internet and increase productivity of health personnel.”

The Chairperson of VON DT-TWG also stated that the implementation of the project will be carried out in phases.

PHASE I

  • List of members to serve in VON In-House Digital Transformation Technical Working Group (VON DT-TWG).
  • Formal Constitution and Inauguration of VON In-House DTTWG Members on Monday 7th September 2020 by the Director-General.
  • Formulation, Production and adoption of VON Digital Transformation Policy.
  • Constitution and Establishment of 2 Digital Transformation Desks in VON Abuja and Lagos offices with one officer per desk.

PHASE II

  • Training of DTTWG Members.
  • Commencement of Phased Implementation of National e-Govt Master Plan (NeGMP).
  • Commencement of Phased Implementation of National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS).
  • Implementation of all national digital transformation-related activities in VON.

The Chairperson of the VON DT-TWG, Hajia Sani expressed the Group’s profound appreciation to His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, the management of NITDA and Director-General of Voice of Nigeria (VON) for reposing so much confidence, as well as finding the team worthy of this all-important National assignment.

Additionally, she stated that the VON DT-TWG will discharge her duties conscientiously with all sense of commitment, as well as passionately collaborate and work with Heads of Directorates, Departments and other relevant stakeholders in the religious pursuit and realization of the strategic mandate of the group in line with the next level mantra of the present Administration as it concerns the acceleration of digital transformation in Nigeria.

The Minister for Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Pantami had on Thursday August 27, 2020, inaugurated the Chairpersons of the Digital Transformation Technical Working Groups.

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