FEC Approves Provision of Quality Assurance Certificates as IT Project Clearance Process Saves Nigeria Over N24b in 2021

Professor Isa Ali Pantami

The Federal Executive Council has approved the Implementation of Strategies for the Enhancement of the Quality of Government Digital Technology Projects and Services during its meeting in Abuja.

This followed the presentation of a memo by the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Pantami.
The approval will enable the implementation of strategies for the enforcement of the Information Technology (IT) Project Clearance by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), in accordance with the NITDA Act (2007), and under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.
A statement signed by the Technical Assistant (Research & Development) to the Minister of Communicatios and Digital Economy, Dr Femi Adeluyi notes that the implementation of the IT Project Clearance process is also in alignment with the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) for a Digital Nigeria, as well as the Nigeria Government Interoperability Framework and Nigeria Government Enterprise Architecture, among others.

It also provides many benefits for the country, including the ensuring that IT projects are not unduly duplicated;, implementation of up to date technology, ensuring that there is an indigenous capacity for after-sales-service to sustain the project beyond its initial deployment and supporting the integration of IT systems and services by Federal Public Institutions to save cost, reduce corruption, promote shared services, enable interoperability and improve efficiency.
It will further ensure that the technology and services procured are suitable for the country from the point of view of security and the environment, among other things as well as promote indigenous content, with preference being given to indigenous companies where capacity, product or service exists.

The statement notes that the implementation of the IT Projects Clearance process has already recorded tremendous success, for example, in 2021, there was unprecedented total of 280 new applications for clearance, of which 258 projects were successfully cleared and a total savings of ₦24,403,266,842.86, estimated at 343.2% increase in savings compared to 2020.
It further states that , there was a significant increase in the use of the IT Clearance Portal in the year 2021- a total of 248 new users from 52 Federal Public Institutions (FPIs) were registered on the portal.

The approval will further enhance the benefits of the IT Clearance process. Council’s approval also mandates FPIs to obtain a Quality Assurance certificate from the NITDA Regulatory Instruments Enforcement Team for any project that is up to N1,000,000,000 (one billion naira).
It states that as part of the implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS), the Ministry will continue to position Nigeria to take advantage of emerging technologies in order to transform Nigeria into a sustainable and secure digital economy.