Agencies under Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy (FMoCDE) have been directed to institute ‘research grants’ for Nigerian startups.
The Minister in-charge of the FMoCDE, Dr. Isa Pantami, disclosed this while appearing as a special guest during Nigeria COVID19 innovation challenge; virtual demo day and prize-giving ceremony organized by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA).
Pantami said that all agencies under the supervision of the Ministry should work on providing research grants for promising innovative solutions that will help in the fight against COVID19.
Aside that, they are to incubate the proposed solutions; transfer / deploy solutions to relevant government agencies.
The concern agencies include;
1. National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA);
2. Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC);
3. Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited;
4. Galaxy Backbone Limited and
5. Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST).
Dr Pantami said “with COVID19, there is a need to fast-track the implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy for a Digital Nigeria, adding that “ICT will play a great role in supporting contact tracing and physical distancing in the war against the virus”.
The highlight of the day was the presentation of research grants to the tune of 2.2 Million Naira to three promising Nigerian startups who participated in the innovation challenge.
The Minister further directed that half of the fund be invested in translating the proposed ideas into solutions.