Domain name registrations for the Nigerian ccTLD passed the 100,000 mark in 2017 with growth consistently over 75% year-on-year. Now the Nigerian registry, NiRA, has its focus on the one million registrations mark.
But despite this consistent growth on the back of promotions being run within Nigeria, the Nigerian government isn’t happy that many registrants are using hosting services outside the country. On 4 December 2017, the Management of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) advised Nigeria’s Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) as well as private sector organisations on the need for them to patronise Nigerian Data Centres.
The rate of adoption and utilisation of ICT in both the public and private sectors of the economy makes hosting data and information inevitable. The Management of NITDA had noted the current practices of both public and private sector organisations hosting data offshore, despite Nigeria having highly reliable Tier III Data Centres, certified by various international organisations and guaranteeing almost 100% availability as well as multiple layers of security. Members of the public are to note that hosting data locally guarantees reduction in cost and capital flight, digital job creation, increased security, and increase in tax revenues thereby boosting the local economy.
Quoting Section 14.1 of the Guidelines for Nigerian Content Development in ICT, NITDA pointed out that it is mandatory for Data and Information Management Firms to “host government data locally within the country and shall not for any reason host any government data outside the country without an express approval from NITDA”. The audience was informed that NITDA is working with local data hosting firms to set appropriate service level requirements and standards for data service provisioning. The Office for Nigerian Content Development in ICT (ONC), NITDA’s Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), has been restructured and charged with the responsibility of developing, promoting and monitoring indigenous ICT adoption and utilisation. In addition, adequate measures have been put in place to facilitate full compliance with these guidelines.