Nigeria prepares for UN Summit of the Future

The Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy; Engr Faruk Yusuf Yabo.

The Federal Ministry of Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy of Nigeria recently organized a stakeholders’ workshop in Abuja to prepare for the upcoming Summit of the Future at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in September 2024.

The workshop aimed to review the zero draft document outlining Nigeria’s stance on the Global Digital Compact (GDC), which will be presented by Dr. Bosun Tijani, Minister of Communications, Innovation, and Digital Economy, at the UNGA.

The session was titled “Stakeholders’ Workshop to Review Nigeria’s Statement to the Global Digital Compact (GDC).”

Represented by the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Engr. Faruk Yusuf Yabo, Dr. Tijani emphasized the importance of the workshop in shaping Nigeria’s contributions to the GDC.

“As we march into the Summit of the Future by the United Nations, we will be contributing positively and in an informed way,” Yabo stated.

He added that Nigeria’s participation would showcase its achievements and unified position on the GDC.

The workshop highlighted Nigeria’s active role in the UNGA and the importance of digital transformation and revolution, driven by global megatrends such as climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic, and economic challenges.

Yabo emphasized the pivotal role of technology in addressing these issues and emphasized Nigeria’s commitment to expanding digital access and fostering inclusivity through advancements in AI, robotics, IoT, and big data.

The statement further revealed that Nigeria’s focus aligns with the five key objectives of the GDC which include:

  1. Closing digital gaps and accelerating progress across the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
  2. Expanding digital economy benefits for all.
  3. Fostering an inclusive, open, safe, and secure digital space that respects human rights.
  4. Advancing equitable data governance.
  5. Enhancing international governance of AI and emerging technologies.

Ronald Kayanja, Country Director of the United Nations Information Centre for Nigeria, provided context on the UN’s evolving agenda, highlighting the significance of the upcoming summit in charting a new path for global cooperation.

He emphasized the importance of Africa’s voice in the GDC, given the continent’s unique challenges in digital transformation.

The workshop concluded with calls for participants to leverage their expertise in refining Nigeria’s contributions to the GDC.

Attendees included ministry directors and the Director-General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi.

This proactive engagement aims to ensure that Nigeria’s and Africa’s perspectives are well-represented in the global digital dialogue at the UN Summit of the Future.

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