By METROWATCH Reporter
The Federal Executive Council presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a refund of N16.7 billion to Borno State Government for road projects executed on behalf of the Nigerian government.
Spokesperson for the Vice President, Laolu Akande, made the disclosure while briefing State House Correspondents at the end of the meeting, said a debt sustainability analysis would be carried out by the Debt Management Office and approval obtained from the National Assembly before the money will be paid to the State government.
He said: “Council approved the President’s memo for the reimbursement of funds spent by the Borno State government for federal road projects in the total sum of N16, 772, 486.19 which will be processed after a debt sustainability analysis has been carried out by the Debt Management Office (DMO), leading to the issuance of debt instrument and promissory notes in the same value to be approved by the National Assembly.”
Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Adeleke Mamora, who also briefed, announced that the Council approved a National Technology Action Plan for Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation in Nigeria’s most vulnerable sectors.
He said due to the devastating effects of climate change, it has become necessary for nations to start taking actions geared towards mitigation and adaptation and Nigeria cannot be left behind.
The Federal Executive Council has approval of the National Blockchain Policy for Nigeria, a move that has been described as a significant step towards the country’s digital transformation.
The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami, stated that the policy would institutionalize blockchain technology in Nigeria and ensure its adoption in various sectors such as banking, security, education, and commerce.
He further revealed that the policy was developed with the input of 56 institutions and personalities, and that regulatory bodies such as the Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigerian Communications Commission, Security and Exchange Commission, and National Universities Commission have been directed to develop regulatory instruments within their sectors to facilitate the implementation of the policy.
The Minister also stressed the importance of being proactive in adopting emerging technologies, as African countries were left out of the first, second, and third industrial revolutions. With the approval of the National Blockchain Policy, Nigeria joins countries such as the United Kingdom, Denmark, Switzerland, Estonia, Georgia, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates in legalizing and approving blockchain technology.
Pantami further noted that blockchain technology would help to ensure data integrity and could add up to $1.76 trillion to the global GDP by 2030.
He also revealed that a National Steering Council would be established to coordinate the efforts of relevant government institutions towards the implementation of the policy. The National Information Technology Development Agency would oversee the process.
Pantami recalled that the council had earlier approved the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy for a digital Nigeria, which was unveiled and launched by President Buhari on November 28, 2019.
He added that the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy for a Digital Nigeria, has eight pillars.