March 27, 2024
Policy & Regulation

NITDA Calls for AI Integration into Nigeria’s Security Framework

In a significant move to bolster Nigeria’s digital initiatives and global presence, the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has urged the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) into the country’s security framework. The call comes as part of NITDA’s broader strategy to enhance collaboration between the information technology (IT) and security sectors.

During a closed-door meeting, NITDA’s Director-General, Kashifu Inuwa, engaged with the National Institute for Security Studies (NISS) Commandant, Alhaji A. S. Adeleke, represented by Deputy Commandant D. E. Egbeji. Inuwa underscored the complementary nature of the security and IT sectors and advocated for the utilization of technologies such as artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things (IoT) to elevate the effectiveness of the security apparatus.

Highlighting NITDA’s commitment to forging meaningful partnerships, Inuwa emphasized the alignment of these efforts with the NITDA Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan (SRAP 2.0). He expressed that working together in the IT and security sectors is pivotal and it resonates with NITDA strategic objective of building strategic partnerships and collaborations.

This initiative follows NITDA’s previous advocacy for collaboration between the agency, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and financial institutions in November 2023. The focus was on leveraging emerging technologies, including AI and data analytics, to deepen digital payments in the country.

Director-General Inuwa reiterated the global significance of AI, dispelling misconceptions and emphasizing its role in simplifying tasks, providing swift responses, and offering innovative solutions. In response, NISS Commandant Alhaji A.S Adeleke expressed the institute’s eagerness to learn from NITDA’s experiences, aiming to gather insights for an executive brief to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR. The brief aims to facilitate policy development and implementation in the realm of national security.

As part of its commitment to fostering AI growth in Nigeria, NITDA has initiated programs like the National Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (NCAIR) and the development of the National Artificial Intelligence Policy. Additionally, the Nigerian government, in October, announced grants of 5 million naira ($6,444) to 45 AI-focused startups and researchers. This move is part of the Nigeria Artificial Intelligence Research Scheme, designed to promote the widespread utilization of AI to drive economic advancement in the country.

Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

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