The National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), has insisted that it will commence with the plan to register all Information Technology (IT) contractors and service providers in the country.
The agency’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Isa Pantami, disclosed this in a statement, adding that several indigenous IT contractors and service providers have commenced the process of registration with the agency.
While noting the fears expressed by the Nigerian Computer Society (NCS), over the exercise, Patami said the move by NITDA was in furtherance of its mandate to properly regulate the sector.
It would be recalled that the NCS had, in a press release issued on 12th January, 2018, questioned NITDA’s powers to register IT companies in the country.
However, the NITDA boss has faulted the Society’s stance, insisting that the enabling Act that established the agency gives it powers to do anything it considers appropriate to regulate the IT sector.
He clarified: “The registration of IT Contractors and Service Providers by NITDA is in line with NITDA’s mandate as specifically stated in Section 6 (a, f) NITDA Act 2007, which mandates it to create a framework for the planning, research, development, standardization, application, coordination, monitoring, evaluation and regulation of information technology practices, activities and systems in Nigeria; and to render advisory services on all information technology matters to the public and private sectors.
“Therefore, it is within the regulatory and developmental role of NITDA to ensure that IT contractual practises and project delivery in the public sector are done in accordance with best practices, within acceptable standards and in the interest of the development of IT in Nigeria.
“Furthermore, the Agency, as the clearance house for IT projects of the Federal Government, has the responsibility to ensure that IT projects are executed by professional firms. NITDA as a regulator will not relent in its quest to improve IT practises and expose projects that are ill conceived or poorly executed.
“NITDA also wishes to assure all Nigerians that it will not allow sub-standard projects in MDAs being executed by companies that have limited or no capacities. The registration process will therefore ensure professionalism in IT service delivery, value for national investments in IT and to weed out quacks who may seek to take advantage of public procurements for selfish interests.
“The process will also provide a detailed database of indigenous IT capabilities in Nigeria to guide the government in planning IT projects and for the promotion of Nigerian content through appropriate use of public sector spend in IT. Furthermore, the process will lead to a review of failed projects with a view at curating knowledge on factors that may have led to failure,” Pantami stated.