Despite huge ICT allocation to agencies, most govt websites are not functional
It was barely one year ago that wife of the president, Aisha Buhari rang the alarm bell on the deteriorating state of Aso Rock clinic despite the huge allocation of N3.94 billion in 2016 and N3.2 billion in 2017. If figures and facts on ground are anything to go by, another scandal maybe brewing in ICT allocations for government agencies.
According to recent report by Daily Trust, Many federal ministries and agencies lack active websites despite spending billions of naira on information technology last year, Two key agencies under the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology are absent online. One of them is the National Space Research Development Agency (NASDRA), which is responsible for Nigeria’s space programme and policy development of space science and technology.
These government websites are either not updated, inactive, incomplete, innacurate, or just have blank pages and broken links that did not lead anywhere.
Some of the listed websites are; National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA), Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Foreign Affairs Ministry.
And of course the OSGF’s website that still remains ‘dry’ despite a ₦65 million maintenance fee.
The National Board for Technology Incubation (NBTI) and National Space Research Development Agency (NASDRA) — agencies under the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology — still do not even have an online presence.
Among the agencies with regularly updated websites are those of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Budget Office of the Federation, Nigeria Meteorological Agency (NiMet), Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), and Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC).
Others in this category are the websites of the ministries of Information and Culture, Communication Technology, Power, Works, and Housing, among others.
Some of the big spenders on computer software acquisition and other IT related services according to 2017 budget are power, works and housing N5.5bn, DSS N1.04bn, communications N1.05bn, OSGF N1.04bn, National Security Adviser N1.04bn, and Code of Conduct Bureau N1.01bn.
Salaries and wages commission spent N917m, National Population Commission N741m, National Immigration Service N600m, Voice of Nigeria (VON) N663m, Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) N355m, Transports N357m, Finance N344m, Foreign N276m, Defence N281m, Interior N252m, Office of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (OHCSF) N204m, and Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) N288m.
Others include Debt Management Office N130m, Information and Culture N126m, Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN)N122m, Trade and Investment N115m, Environment N147m, Education N111m, Economic Planning N169m, Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) N232m, ICPC N145m, Petroleum N170m, and Mining N245m.
Board of Prisons, Immigration and Civil Defence spent N163m, Fiscal Responsibility Commission N85m, Nuclear Regulatory Agency N100m, Sports and youths N68m, Water Resources N40m, Federal Character Commission N95m, State House N181m, among others.