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ICT Laboratory

Dr. Eugene Juwah, Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), has called on all governments within the federation to adopt Information and Communication Technology (ICT) tools in carrying out public service. The NCC boss, who was speaking at the Nigerian Telecom Development Lecture (NITDEL) organised by the Nigerian Telecoms News Magazine recently, noted that adoption of ICT would aid governments to impact on the lives of the citizenry. Juwah pointed out that “Governance and the delivery of public services can be performed more efficiently through the use of ICT, which he said, may include mobile/fixed telephony, internet, broadband and wide area networks.” He also noted that ICT helps develop an economy as it opens new opportunities through e-commerce, e-education, e-health and e-government. “This is why a number of government agencies at both the federal and state levels are developing ICT facilities to improve service delivery, information sharing and reduce delay,” he explained. Juwah also pointed out that the growth of mobile telecommunications and broadband internet access coupled with the rate at which they are embraced by subscribers is a reflection of the  importance of ICT to the people. He added that Nigeria currently has 120 million active phone lines, as at June 2013, which are employed greatly in business and governance. “There are many areas that have been positively affected by Nigeria’s ICT, including direct and indirect employment, new business opportunities, learning and skills development opportunities and in human relationships”, he noted. Governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola, who delivered a paper at the event, titled ‘ICT: A Tool for Social Development’, highlighted the importance of the computer to human existence in the 21st century. “In its various forms – whether it is mainframe, desktop, laptop, tablet, palmtop, or handsets, the computer is the veritable centre around which human activities across the world now revolve,” he explained. Governor Aregbesola also noted that the computer has become a resourceful machine for agricultural development as farmers employ it for various tasks: “Even farmers need the computer for soil testing and analysis, planning, operating certain machinery, tracking farm animals, diagnosing diseases in plants and animals, confirming bank balances, requisitioning farm inputs such as seedlings, fertilisers, agro-chemicals and for weather and harvest forecasting.” The governor also compared the capacity of the computer to that of the user, stating that it is able to perform a range of activities depending on how it is used. “The infinite uses and applications to which the computer can be put are commensurate with the fertility of the user’s imagination. Hence, ICT has the potential to open up huge possibilities that can enhance growth and development of human society,” he explained.

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This article was first published on 27th September 2013

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