The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) plans to build six information and communication technology parks in each of the six geo-political zones across the country.
The project involves the construction and equipping of fully functional tier-four digital industrial complexes in four ICT parks, one each in Abeokuta for the south-west; Enugu for the south-east, Maiduguri for the north-east and Kano for the north-west, while the parks for the north-central and south-south regions will be established soon.
Aimed at promoting socio-economic transformation in Nigeria, the ICT parks have been designed to have fast internet services and constant power supplies.
They will provide innovation labs and digital fabrication laboratories for use by ICT innovators and entrepreneurs to turn their ideas into products and prototypes, as well as a commercial hub for ICT capacity building and digital skills, create employment and entrepreneurial activities and facilitate smart city deployment across the complex.
The move will also support the government’s ICT–related policies by facilitating the availability and accessibility of ICT services across the country and promote their usage across all sectors.
Umar Danbatta, the executive vice chairman of NCC, said: “The whole idea of putting these two things – skill acquisition and innovation – at the forefront of this very important initiative is to produce youths that can be self-reliant, generate employment for themselves and for other Nigerians.
“The NCC ICT parks project is another move by the leadership of the commission to boost youth digital skills acquisition, promote innovations, provide jobs for Nigerian youth and ultimately support the overall digital economy agenda of the federal government.
“Going forward, we hope to see software development, incubation and hardware development coming out from the ICT parks. We also hope to see innovative applications that will leverage the broadband network, which the commission is deepening in order to socially and economically transform our communities and societies,” he added.
He urged young people to be prepared to use the initiative in order to be empowered both socially and economically.
“I would like to send out a very important message to our youths, especially those who are currently occupied with various innovative applications, those who have acquired the skills but are looking for where to put the skills to fruitful engagements, by incubating them, commercialising them, or giving publicity to these excellent initiatives, to be ready to leverage this facilities,” he said.