Monday Reuben, Abuja – No fewer than five hundred (500) stakeholders are to meet in Abuja Tuesday, October 4, 2022 for validation of the draft Nigeria Data Protection Bill, ahead of its transmission to the National Assembly.
The Validation Meeting, scheduled to hold at the Nigerian Airforce Conference Centre, Abuja, is being convened by the Nigeria Data Protection Bureau, with support from the Nigeria Digital Identification for Development (ID4D) project.
Minister for Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Ali Pantami, is to deliver a Keynote address at the meeting.
National Commissioner and Chief Executive Officer of the Nigeria Data Protection Bureau, Dr. Vincent Olatunji, confirmed this during a meeting with the Nigeria Digital ID4D team in Abuja on Monday.
According to Olatunji, stakeholders from the public, private and civil society sectors are billed to meet, to review and validate the draft of the proposed Nigeria Data Protection Bill, with a view to ensuring that all are on the same page, before the Bill is presented to the Federal Executive Council, for onwards transmission to the National Assembly for consideration.
“Recall that on the 26th and 27th of July 2022, here in Abuja, representatives of relevant public institutions, the private sector and civil society organisations gathered to deliberate on the way forward towards strengthening the legal framework on data protection in Nigeria.
“The Policy Dialogue sought to bring together critical stakeholders to deliberate on the way forward, towards the enactment of a principal Data Protection legislation for Nigeria.
“During the Policy Dialogue, inputs from various stakeholders were gathered. Now, a draft bill is ready, accommodating all the inputs from stakeholders. As agreed during the meeting, a validation meeting is scheduled for tomorrow, October 4, 2022, for stakeholders to ensure that the concerns and recommendations made during the Policy Dialogue are accommodated in the draft bill before it is transmitted for consideration. We want to ensure that all stakeholders are on the same page, as we progress.
“It may interest you to know that in September 2022, we engaged the leadership and members of relevant National Assembly committees on same. We also specially engaged the Federal Ministry of Justice on the necessity of the bill, among others. We shall continue to engage,” Olatunji said.
Continuing, he commended the Nigeria Digital Identification for Development (ID4D) project for what he described as tremendous support for the enactment of a Data Protection Bill for Nigeria.
Also speaking, Project Coordinator, Nigeria Digital ID4D project, Musa Odole Solomon , described data protection as necessary for Nigeria, arguing that “it is not only in conformity with global best practices, but needed to guarantee the security and safety of citizens’ data.”
He pledged the continued support of the Nigeria Digital Identification for Development project to efforts towards enacting a data protection law for Nigeria.
According to him, “passing the data protection bill is one of ID4D’s mandates. Many other countries of the world have data protection laws in place, and it is our desire to ensure that it is passed as soon as possible.
This Validation Meeting is one of activities lined up to ensure adequate stakeholders’ engagement towards birthing an inclusive and robust data protection law in Nigeria.”
The Nigeria Digital Identification for Development project is a Nigerian project, jointly funded by the World Bank, European Investment Bank and French Development Agency to support the identification ecosystem in the country, over a five-year period.