By Kolawole Olayinka, Abeokuta
Vice President Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has defined the digital economy as the future of all human existence, business, education, health care, security, and governance.
Prof. Osinbajo stated this at the official launching of Ogun State Digital Economy Empowerment Project (OGDPEP) held at Ogun Tech-Hub President Muhammadu Buhari Estate, Kobape, Abeokuta.
VP explained that access to broadband and modern technology tools have become compulsory for any community that seeks meaningful growth and development, security, and prosperity for its people.
Prof. Osinbajo also commended a futuristic, dynamic, innovative and digitally compliant of Ogun state Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun for the credible and relevant initiative by bringing broadband to homes, businesses and offices in the State.
He said, “You’re opening up Ogun State residence and businesses digitally not just across Nigeria but to the entire Universe.
“Your Excellency, this project is a critical component of Mr President’s objectives of broad-band connectivity for all by 2023.
“This ambition as you know is now enshrined in our Economic Sustainability Plan and as part of National commitment to make broadband connectivity available to all, you will recall that in 2017, the State Governors under the auspices of the National Economic Council agreed to harmonize a right of way charges payable by Telecommunication Companies and related public utility infrastructure on Local Governments, States and Federal Highways to encourage co-location of the companies that vibre the cables
“Also, in another demonstration of Government’s commitment in this regard, the Federal Ministry of Communication and digital economy launched a National broad-band plan which is designed to deliver data downloads units across Nigeria with a minimum of 25ABPS in urban areas and 10MPPs in rural areas with effective coverage available to at least 90% of the population by 2025 at affordable prices.
“Digital Economy Technology is the future of all aspects of Human existence, Business, Education, Health Care, Governance, Security, the practice of practically every profession, is either already digitally based or will become so in the coming months and years “someone said digital economy is to develop today what electricity was to develop in the 19th and 20th Centuries” so making it available to all our citizens and businesses is the most far-sighted action that any government can take today”
The State governor, Prince Abiodun said the formal launch of the OGDEIP, is to formally deepen the various advantages of information technology advancements into all sectors and making ICT one indispensable point of our economy.
The ICT industry has continued to account for more than 21% of our dear State’s Gross Domestic Product, and hence continued to provide countless job opportunities for our growing educated and creative citizenry.
“And, as we are putting efforts towards improving on our status as the Industrial Hub of the nation and the investors’ destination of choice, as well as the education capital of the country, by providing an enduring legacy in digital economy at a full capacity at this time is very apposite.
Abiodun said, “we are also not unaware of the need to improve accessibility. Therefore, the strategy of the OGDEIP is to provide broadband connectivity to every corner of our dear State.
“This is a Joint Project is a joint effort between our Administration and our partner, 21st Century Technologies Limited (21CTL), to deliver fibre-optic cables and mechanics across all our 20 Local Government Areas within the next two years.
“This will include laying the foundation for increased broadband connectivity and the attendant opportunities the new technology will bring to all the people and our dear State’s economy, in general.
“As a matter of fact, the first phase of OGDEIP will establish a fiber optic network ring around the entire State that will ensure connectivity particularly for key educational institutions, government agencies, and residents in unconnected and under-connected areas.
“The ring design will ensure minimal downtime due to the manner in which the network can be automatically re-routed where there is a break in connection.
The governor added that the second phase of this project is the establishment of a world-class data center along our own Silicon Alley in Abeokuta that will host a variety of ICT services both for the public and private sectors, and Cyber Security scrubbing centers.
“This stage will complement the third phase of the Project. This phase will feature the completion of an ICT Park donated by the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) along the same route which will house world-class technology centers for cutting-edge technology research and development.
“Also, OGDEIP is a culmination of a significant groundwork already undertaken by our Administration towards creating an enduring and sustainable digital economy in Ogun State. Part of this groundwork has involved the development of Bills and passage of laws to entrench the use of IT in governance processes and practices in the State.”
He said “our Administration is taking practical steps towards integrating technology into its practices and businesses.
“Here, I commend the Ogun State Bureau of ICT for transforming the Ogun Tech Hub, also located along our own Silicon Alley, into an attractive innovation hub where worthy technological skills and innovations are being nurtured on a daily basis.
“In this aspect also, we have begun deploying electronic document management systems, e-procurement tools and digitized revenue collection platforms towards improving efficiency and reducing leakages in all our MDAs.”