An IT expert, Mr Demola Aladekomo, has called on the Federal Government to ensure proper national identity management to avoid continuous socio-economic challenges in the country.
Aladekomo,Chairman of Chams Plc, gave the advice at a virtual forum organised by the MBA Class of 83-84, University of Lagos (UNILAG), on Friday in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria(NAN) reports that the topic of the forum was : “Socio-Economic Benefits of Shifting Paradigms”.
He said that the country should manage people with proper identity so as to guard against continuous socio-economic challenges.
He said: “Especially in our education, health sector, infrastructure development, security, rule of law and others which were gravely exposed in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Nigeria has lost about 2.5 billion dollars in the last 45 years due to poor implementation of several failed national identity projects.
“We may even waste another borrowed 400 million dollars by the end of 2021 with the non-clarity in the management of various identity projects in the country.”
He said that with about 210 million Nigerians yet to be fully captured in the national identification scheme, the country might likely experience increased chaos, anarchy and other social vices.
“This will be further exacerbated in 2050 when our population is estimated to be about 400 million if we do not get it right at this stage.”
Aladekomo called for a paradigm shift in three areas : prioritising data and technology, multi-agency approach, and private sector involvement.
“Technologies have changed the landscape, digital economy is the new play, we need databases at national, state, agencies and sectoral levels.
“These data need to be domiciled in Nigeria while local technologies should be encouraged,”Aladekomo said.
He urged the Federal Government to involve the private sector in the execution of national identity projects for cost effective delivery, speedy execution, and attraction of investment.
“Moreover, many of them have the right and most suited technology for our peculiar environment,” he said.
Also, Mr Felix Adejimi, a Software Developer, said that data and digital transformation were the driver and fuel of modern economy,and needed to be taken seriously as a nation.
“Moreover, the Federal Government will do better by focusing more on providing enabling and secured environment for private companies to thrive,” he said.