Stakeholders seek developmental approach to indigenous software

Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) Dr Isa Pantami PHOTO: TWITTER?NITDA NIGERIA

Stakeholders in the software ecosystem have urged for a change in the approach of moderating the growth and adoption of indigenous software, from a regulatory to developmental approach.

Speaking to Nigeria Communications Week, they said that the current approach of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) is more of regulation than developmental which has not helped in the adoption of indigenous software by organizations in the country.

Citing success recorded by capital market operators in the application of indigenous software in the sector, where Nigeria Stock Exchange issued minimum global standard for technology vendors in the market known as Financial Information Exchange Technology, which enabled them to domesticate for capital market operators, Amos Emmanuel, managing director, Programos Software, said that NITDA should encourage technology players in different sectors of the economy to come up with innovations in line with global best practices.

“Technological changes have broken so many laydown rules and should not be regulated.

Today, manufacturing sector in the country is averse with technology because of fears of loss of employment while forgetting the new jobs it will create, but today they are embarrassed by technology.

With artificial intelligence and machine learning there is no more chairs and table in the offices,” he said.

Dr. Yele Okeremi, president, Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON), said that there is need to use indigenous solution to achieve global standard.

He said that NITDA should be a catalyst for IT development and not a bond and that its impact has to be measured through how many successful technological firms have spring up instead of how many regulations.

“NITDA should be seen as encouraging local players to be able to achieve global standards.

Today, indigenous solutions providers are faced with certification challenge which organizations have attributed as responsible for their lack of patronage. How many of Nigerian companies have achieved global certification?

“For instance, there are only 3 companies in Nigeria that have attended Capability Maturity Model in Integration (CMMI) they are PFS, Interswitch and upperlink.

We should be creating technology companies and scaling them. Pro-business leadership is about removing limits and not about creating limitation.

We can focus on world-class and domesticate it. These can be achieved in different sectors such as oil & gas, telecoms, agriculture, health among others,” he added.

Okeremi noted that achieving domestication requires focusing on competence that has to do with setting up specialization training centres just as India is doing with its IIT.

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