Dr. Isa Pantami, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, is recommending the introduction of emerging technology courses into the tertiary institutions’ curricula to allow youths to contribute to revenue generation and job creation.
Pantami said this while speaking at the 7th Convocation lecturer of Nile University of Nigeria in Abuja on Friday titled: “ICT as a Catalyst for Nigeria Economic Development in the 21st Century.”
The minister noted that the world was advancing toward the fourth industrial revolution, hence the need to begin to develop ideas and digital solutions that would promote the development of the country.
He said the country relied so much on oil and gas whose revenue generation was not enough to develop the country.
He added that the Federal Government had therefore made efforts to leverage on other sectors through the renaming of the ministry of communications to the ministry of communications and the digital economy.
The minister said the renaming of the ministry would create an enabling environment for the creation of digital jobs across all the geo-political zones in the country.
He said Nigeria has the largest economy in Africa with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) valued at 397 billion dollars.
According to him, the contribution of the digital economy to our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the second quarter of 2019 is 13.85 percent, which means the contribution of ICT is increasing in Nigeria.
“Nigeria is the 6th largest producer of oil and has the 10th largest oil reserves in the world and this sector has been defining role on the economy of Nigeria.
” The development of Nigeria’s digital is very important and we want to help a large number of Nigerians acquire digital skills.
” We needed to introduce digital courses in our universities. Our problem is that we don’t learn until problems come up.
” We are offering courses that are not relevant to our society, so digital space is an aspect of the industrial revolution that has expanded.
” I want to challenge Nigerian Universities, especially the Vice-Chancellors to think ahead and be proactive in the area of digital technology to be able to address issues when it comes up,” he said.
Pantami also emphasized the need to be proactive in building the capacity of people through critical and analytical thinking.
He also said that the ministry was planning to ensure that Nigeria moves from an ICT consuming to an ICT producing nation, saying this will help to generate jobs and build the revenue generation of the country.
He, however, urged the youths to use the ICT platform as a source of generating revenue that would improve the country rather than using it to spread rumors and hate speeches.