Tuesday, March 22, 2011

NCC Partners ISPON on Telecom Software Services

From Left: Dr. Eugene Juwah, EVC of NCC, Mr. Yele Okeremi (Chairman Legal & Legislative Committee) Chris Uwaje , President, ISPON,  and Mr. Collins Onuegbu Chairman, Education.

The Nigerian Communications Commission has declared its readiness to partner with the Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria, ISPON, in the establishment of the national working group on telecommunications software services transactions and billing systems.
Towards this end, the Commission has asked ISPON to articulate a clear programme of action for the consideration of the management and board of the Commission since billing in telecommunications and similar software related activities in the telecom industry need to be properly practiced in Nigeria.
Executive Vice Chairman of the Commission, Dr. Eugene Juwah, made these known in Abuja recently when the leadership of the institute, led by its President, Mr. Chris Uwaje paid him a courtesy call to unveil its activities and expectations.
Juwah said although the activities of ISPON is much more related to the National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, the Commission is ready to support in the areas that fall within the telecommunications regulation and practice.
He called for a concerted effort towards realizing cost effective usage of software solutions in various aspects of economic management in the country.
Earlier, President of the Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria, ISPON, Mr. Chris Uwaje, said the visit is in furtherance of the institute’s national advocacy for the establishment and adoption of national software strategic policy and to rub minds on the critical and challenging ICT issues in national development.
“It is our professional opinion that our nation is faced with monumental challenges on how to structure, configure and reposition information and communications technology and especially software Nigeria, as a prime industry for nation building, national security and global competitiveness”, he said.
To address these concerns he said, “There is need for fundamental need to establish an initiative to review existing ICT policies, strategies and establish as well as implement a National Software strategy and policy aimed at ensuring that Nigeria will be able to satisfy its domestic, regional and international requirements for application software solutions, content development and usage.”
He remarked that it is critical for core ICT stakeholders such as the NCC, NITDA, and ICT industry professional bodies such as the Computer Society, and ISPON to work together to achieve these objectives.
Uwaje lamented several failed software projects in Nigeria including transfer of an estimated more than One Billion US Dollars from Nigeria annually in the form of cost of licensing software, delivery services and technical support, in addition to evidence of colossal losses to the country’s banks and the oil sector, and even government due to inconsistent version upgrade and processes leading to failed software products, project implementation and services.
The ISPON boss listed areas of central concerns to the country’s economic development and national security to include unregulated state of foreign software products in Nigeria, non existence of national policy and legislation on software, implementation of e-government, e-education, tele-medicine and protection of national cyberspace for national security and survivability.

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