The Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy and its parastatals under the leadership of the Minister, Dr Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami, has generated a total of one trillion, 54 billion naira as revenue for the Federal Government through the implementation of various policies, initiatives and interventions in the two years that Pantami is the Minister in charge.
According to the figures of the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics, NBS in the fourth quarter of 2020, Communications and Digital Economy sector almost singlehandedly lifted the country out of recession, with ICT recording the highest growth rate.
In less than 2 years of Pantami’s headship of the Ministry and its parastatals, it has generated as stated earlier over N1Trillion for the Federal Government. This translates to an average of about N44 Billion every month or over N1.4 Billion every day.
About N360 Billion of this revenue was largely from Spectrum allocated by the National Frequency Management Council (NFMC), under the Chairmanship of the Minister, to the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) for commercial purposes.
Well over N600 Billion was paid by ICT Companies to the account of the Federal Government through the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
Furthermore, over Ninety Four Billion Naira was generated for the Federal Government and approved by the National Assembly in line with relevant laws, as part of the 2020 appropriation for personnel, capital projects, capacity building, interventions, etc. The IT Projects Clearance Programme also saved over Five Billion Naira for the Federal Government.
In the two years since Dr Pantami assumed duty as the Honorable Minister of the Ministry, 1,667 ICT projects and Centres have been established across the country.
In addition to these 1,667 already established, 455 other projects and programmes are ongoing and all are in full alignment with the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy for a Digital Nigeria.
In the last 2 years, the Ministry has offered direct world class training to 219,198 citizens in digital skills and emerging technologies. This number does not include the many citizens that have benefited from trainings through the Ministry’s ICT Centres which are all efforts geared at promoting a paradigm shift from the general societal focus in Nigeria on degrees to a strong focus on skills acquisition.
In Dr Pantami’s 2 years tenure as Minister, 16 National policies have emerged, which includes; the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS); Roadmap for the Implementation of the NDEPS;
the Nigerian National Broadband Plan 2020-2025; Sim Card Registration Policy;
National Policy on Digital Identity for Internally Displaced Persons in Nigeria;
National Policy on VSAT Installation Core Skills for Nigerians, amongst many others that have been developed and implemented as against just one policy he inherited on assumption into the office.
The Ministry has also significantly increased the number of National Identification Number (NIN) enrolments since the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) was integrated into the Communications and Digital Economy ministry in September 2020. The increase of about 20 million enrolments in less than a year is unprecedented. The ministry equally launched the Android enrolment software and has received Federal Executive Council (FEC) approval for the upgrade of critical ICT infrastructure of the National Identity Management System.
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