Posted on:

July 5, 2024

Global Digital Compact: Nigeria Gears Up for United Nations Summit of the Future

Engr. Faruk Yabo, Permanent Secretary

To prepare for the Summit of the Future of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), the Federal Government of Nigeria through the Federal Ministry of Communications, Innovation & Digital Economy has held a stakeholders workshop for the summit coming up in September 2024.

The workshop reviewed the zero draft document on Nigeria’s position to the Global Digital Compact (GDC) to be presented by the Honourable Minister of Communications, Innovation & Digital Economy, Dr. ‘Bosun Tijani, at the UNGA 2024.

The UNGA at the 77th Session had resolved that this year’s meeting will focus on the modalities of the Summit of the Future.

The workshop, which was held at Mbora, Abuja, was titled ‘Stakeholders’ Workshop to Review Nigeria’s Statement to the Global Digital Compact’.

Dr. Tijani, who was represented at the workshop by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Engr. Faruk Yusuf Yabo said: “The Ministry is excited to host the workshop where Nigeria’s position in the United Nations Global Digital Compact making process for the Summit of the Future will be redefined.

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

“Our contributions to the overall policy making process of the UN will enable us to highlight what we have achieved and also show our unified position on the Global Digital Compact’s Future Summit,” he added.

He further explained in his opening remarks that the workshop is extremely important to the country because of its impact on Nigeria’s global position.

He noted that Nigeria has been an active member of the UN General Assembly right from its inception.

According to him, the key point that will occupy discussions is on Digital Transformation and Digital Revolution which are largely informed by mega trends such as climate change, which many countries of the world are confronted with, including desert encroachment, COVID-19 pandemic, global conflicts and economic meltdown.

In the face of all the aforementioned challenges, he said that technology stands out as a pivotal piece of solution that will help to deal with the myriad of issues.

He stressed that it is extremely important for Nigeria to key into the global drive in order to accelerate the expansion of access to closing the gap by bringing about inclusivity and the adventure of AI, Robotics, Internet of Things, Big Data, etc. which every nation must find itself in the entire ecosystem.

Nigeria’s focus is based on the five key objectives of the GDC which are:

1. To close the digital divides and accelerate progress across the Sustainable Development Goals.

2. Expand inclusion and benefits from the digital economy for all.

3. Foster an inclusive, open, safe and secure digital space that respects, protects and promote human rights.

4. Advance equitable and interpretable data governance.

5. Enhance international governance of artificial intelligence, and emerging technologies for the benefit of humanity.

In his goodwill message, the Country Director, United Nations Information Centre for Nigeria, Ronald Kayanja, gave a brief background on the United Nations Global Survey (UNGS) that was carried out to show the changes the world is grappling with today, which were not envisaged in 1945.

He said that in view of the above changes that have occurred over time, the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres wrote a report which was based on global common agenda, and proposed that one of the things that needed to be done is to chart a new path for the world that is different from what was obtainable in 1945.

He said that the UN will be eighty years old in 2025 and the Summit for the Future will take place in New York, in September this year.

According to the UN Country Director, the essence of GDC is to close the global digital divide and it is pertinent to the Africa continent based on the five objectives earlier itemised.

The core facilitators for Summit of the Future, he said, are Germany and Namibia for the international digital compact, while for the local digital compact are Sweden and Zambia respectively.

He informed the stakeholders that the UN body had a draft before, and has equally done the second draft this year on June 26 for the GDC.

He expressed happiness over the consultation among stakeholders because it was timely and key to the enhancement of both Nigeria’s and Africa’s voice going forward.

Also, he said Nigeria is important in terms of its inputs in the GDC, and not only for her, but also for Africa as a whole because it faces a lot of challenges in terms of digital transformation and digital divide.

He therefore called on the participants at the workshop to bring their expertise and wealth of experience to bear towards coming up with effective recommendations for the final draft of the GDC, so as not to make the voice of Africa unheard for generations yet unborn.

The Stakeholders Workshop had in attendance Directors in the Ministry, DG of NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, among others.

“Our contributions to the overall policy making process of the UN will enable us to highlight what we have achieved and also show our unified position on the Global Digital Compact’s Future Summit.”

In his goodwill message, the Country Director, United Nations Information Centre for Nigeria, Ronald Kayanja, gave a brief background on the United Nations Global Survey (UNGS) that was carried out to show the changes the world is grappling with today, which were not envisaged in 1945.

He said that in view of the above changes that have occurred over time, the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres wrote a report which was based on global common agenda, and proposed that one of the things that needed to be done is to chart a new path for the world that is different from what was obtainable in 1945.

He said that the UN will be eighty years old in 2025 and the Summit for the Future will take place in New York, in September this year.

According to the UN Country Director, the essence of GDC is to close the global digital divide and it is pertinent to the Africa continent based on the five objectives earlier itemised.

The core facilitators for Summit of the Future, he said, are Germany and Namibia for the international digital compact, while for the local digital compact are Sweden and Zambia respectively.

He informed the stakeholders that the UN body had a draft before, and has equally done the second draft this year on June 26 for the GDC.

He expressed happiness over the consultation among stakeholders because it was timely and key to the enhancement of both Nigeria’s and Africa’s voice going forward.

Also, he said Nigeria is important in terms of its inputs in the GDC, and not only for her, but also for Africa as a whole because it faces a lot of challenges in terms of digital transformation and digital divide.

He therefore called on the participants at the workshop to bring their expertise and wealth of experience to bear towards coming up with effective recommendations for the final draft of the GDC, so as not to make the voice of Africa unheard for generations yet unborn.

The Stakeholders Workshop had in attendance Directors in the Ministry, DG of NITDA, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, among others.

Kania Maliki Andeyaba

Deputy Director, Press and Public Relations

Leave Us a Message

Kindly fill out the below and we shall keep in touch with you.

    FULL NAME

    PHONE

    EMAIL ADDRESS

    MESSAGE