Nigeria Digital Sense Forum 2012 – Communiqué 

Theme: “ Internet Governance and Mobile Economy in Nigeria”

We, the participants at 4th Nigeria DigitalSENSE Forum on Internet Governance for Development (IG4D) organized by DigitalSENSE Africa (DSA) in collaboration with the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) held at the Golden Gate Paradise Ikoyi, Lagos, (Nigeria), between the 8th and 9th of March 2012, with the theme, Internet Governance and Mobile Economy In Nigeria, hereby maintain the call for a more proactive role by every stakeholder through Public Private Partnership (PPP) in recognition of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) push for the involvement of governments and all stakeholders in the promotion of Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D), as well as the Multi-Stakeholder Approach (MAS) being championed by the global coordinating agency of Domain Name System (DNS), the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).
Participants commended NCC for its consistency in supporting Public Private Partnership concept in Nigeria and for partnering with DSA in propagating the use of internet Governance for Development (IG4D) as well as its ‘Digital Access Programme’ which is the introduction of a wireless cloud within a specified area, adaptive for advanced tertiary institutions were NCC make available to the students laptops, internet services and generators. They also urged other government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to borrow a leaf from NCC.
Again, recalling the standpoint of the participants, we observed that DigitalSENSE Africa, has introduced her first annual essay competition for the youths with the objective to encourage creativity and discourse on internet Governance for Development by Nigerian youths between the ages of 18 to 30 years. This year, however, they are to write on the topic: ‘Internet Governance and Mobile Economy in Nigeria’.
Participants also observed that DigitalSENSE Africa publishers of ITRealms Online, introduced yet a new package called ‘NaijaAgroNet’ to accommodate the interest of people with agro-business, environmental and sustainable development subjects especially among women and youths. Furthermore the new generic top names in the internet world is about to change and from next year there will be developments with emphasis on new top domain names. Such top domain names will include (though not exhaustive) names like .bank, .abuja, .shop etc and of particular interest is .africa.


It was observed that in the internet world Nigeria does not have a lot of contents. Most of what exist is foreign and there is no legislation regulating electronic transactions in Nigeria and estimated the total cyber crime globally at $114bn, about N17.9 trillion.
On the introduction of cash-lite society by CBN, participants identified that the essence of CBN introducing a cash-lite society is to reduce usage of cash in circulation with the use of electronic cash transfer technologies. However participants were quick to add that Nigeria is not yet ready for such electronic cash transactions given the lack of infrastructure and awareness, even with the little infrastructure available for this kind of service. They cited an instance with poor internet access, high cost of access and cyber security were identified as the major obstacles to achieving this feat.
Further, participants however maintained that Nigeria’s Internet Protocol (IP) should be unblocked and further urged government to address the issues of high-cost of Internet access and devices as well as ensuring that all primary, secondary and tertiary institutions have well-equipped computer laboratories fully connected to the Internet.
The Forum further maintains that:
1. There is very minimal awareness of Internet Governance and the anticipated changes in our country as such; there is need for the messages to be sent out and consistently.
3. Nigerians are encouraged to purchase the new generic top domain names (gTLDs)
4. With a broadband plan, access to internet will be more affordable and create the platform for better global competition.
5. Mobile economy is a very welcome development in Nigeria
6. Participants expressed delight over the Chairman, House Committee on ICT for assurance that the National Assembly will pass the bill on electronic transactions and Cyberlaw in general in Nigeria before the end of the legislative session, so as to reaffirm Nigeria’s position in battling cyber crimes.
7. Nigeria DigitalSENSE forum is a recognized platform for discussing ICT and related implementations in Nigeria with special emphasis on security and cyber crime, it creates the platform to assemble and deliberate, educate and proffer solutions on how to make best use of the situation; taking benefit of the available Internet Access, its Diversity, Openness in addressing matters concerning Security and its Governance in Nigeria.
8. Also, Nigerians were urged to adopt the .ng domain names, and should see it as their currency in the cyber space, thus encouraged to use it.
9. That Nigeria should move from the state of consumption to production of contents
10. Youths should not be consumers of social media products but should strive to create such platforms or better ones which has the potential to create gainful and purposeful employment.
11. Participants hailed NCC for accepting to implement the outcome of the 4th Nigeria DigitalSENSE Forum on Internet Governance for Development.
12. Adequate personal security measures should be put in place by individuals to secure their funds and transactions, such as looking out for the appropriate URL, use of tightly secured passwords and regularly changing them, also desist from responding to strange emails requesting for your personal details. Finally people should demand for Short Messaging Service (SMS) alerts from your banks


Stakeholders were charged:

(a) As parents to monitor their wards on the use of ICT
(b) To be mindful of the use of the internet for their cash transactions

(c) To follow up on the promises of the National Assembly to fast-tracks the passage of cybercrime bill before the end of the current Legislative session, so as to ensure internet security in the CBN recently introduced mobile transactions also that telecommunications infrastructure should be seen as a national resource by law and protected as such since this is what will drive the mobile economy.

(d) To be careful about what they send out on the internet, especially youths, so that it does not come back to haunt them in future since whatever is posted on the web will have minimal chance of retrieval.
The Nigeria Digital Sense Forum 2012 was proudly supported by MICROSOFT Nigeria, Interswitch, Teledom Group, IXPN, MTN Nigeria Communications Limited, Galaxy Backbone plc, Omatek Plc, Linkserve, Paradigm Initiative Nigeria (PIN), and endorsed by Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA), Nigeria Internet Group (NIG), Association of Licensed Telecom Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Association of Telecom Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) etcetra.
The Nigeria DigitalSENSE Forum 2012, was presided over by the MD PiNet Informatics and council Member GNSO and Former President Nigeria Internet Group, Engr. Lanre Ajayi . The forum attracted over 600 participants, cutting across decision makers, regulators, government representatives, NGOs, technocrats, ISPs, major GSM/mobile operators, online entrepreneurs, students, market women/men and religious organisation and community-based organisation.



For further information please contact:
Executive Director, Operations, DigitalSENSE Africa (DSA),
Nkemdilim Nweke (Mrs), 234-8099400183;
www.digitalsenseafrica.com.ng,
Inquiries: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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