By Usman Usman Garba
As Kano State Government under the leadership of Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje moves to shift to full pledged e-governance era, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami has appreciated that the state was the first in the country to move towards that direction.
He made the assertion during a two-day capacity building programme on ‘E-Governance and Digital Economy’ for members of the state Executive Council, held at Digital Bridge Institute, Kano, recently.
Dr. Pantami said: “This is the first training we are organizing for any state in Nigeria. It came up as a result of His Excellency’s visit to my office, where we discussed the concept and here we are today conducting the training.
“The training will be the beginning of our mutual and beneficial relationship between our Ministry and Kano State Government.
“Kano being the most populous state in the country, according to the last head count, and the commercial nerve centre of Northern Nigeria and some West African countries, this shift to E-Governance and digital transformation is vital and timely.”
He explained that: “We do this kind of training based on interest and request for the training. Any state willing to get similar training after Kano, they should get across to us.”
By way of appreciation to the state effort along this line, the minister emphasized that: “On behalf of the Federal Government, we are donating 110 computers as a show of support to this effort displayed by Kano State Government.”
“We want these computers to be distributed to strategic areas, especially to the trainees. This is just the beginning.
“I also suggest that similar training be extended to Permanent Secretaries and Directors, among other strategic positions of governance in the state,” he advised.
Pantami added: “This move by Kano State is an alignment of four pillars out of eight pillars of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy of the Federal Government.”
He gave examples of digital literacy and skills, digital services and digital society and emerging technologies, among other pillars, that the state aligned with.
In his remarks, Governor Ganduje reiterated his administration’s commitment towards further employing technology in running the affairs of the state.
He cited areas like security, revenue generation, health and education sectors among others.
He reminded that: “Before this intervention, we took inventory of the use of ICT in our ministries down to local government levels. We now realised the necessity for digital transformation and e-governance strategy.
“We employ technology in the security sector, with all commitment and determination. The result of which is fruitful and encouraging. “You will all bear with me witness that Kano is one of the most peaceful states in the country,” he said.
The governor added that: “It is because we attach importance to ICT, that we trained hundreds of our youth on ICT and we gave them computers, among other interventions.”
Governor Ganduje thanked the minister for the ICT Centre in the state, saying “…we are also thanking you for what is happening today.
“The training programme will, among other things, motivate Kano State executives to embrace ICT as a great enabler of productivity and performance.
“It also focuses on preparing the executives’ mindsets on the potential and possibilities of ICT for social and economic growth in the 21st Century.”
According to the training module, the training is designed to demonstrate how the state executives can successfully initiate the development and implementation of government-wide E-Governance strategy.
“They will also be conversant with the concept of project management and how Kano digital transformation projects should be managed and executed,” said the governor.