By Bukar Bolori
In a bid to galvanise a wholistic and realistic data of Nigerians in the Diaspora, the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM) has launched its Data Mapping and Registry Portal in Abuja.
Inaugurating the Diaspora Mapping Portal, the Minister of State, Foreign Affairs, Amb. Zubairu Dada, remarked that the portal will enhance Diaspora participation in demographic and national planning as well as budgeting purposes at all levels of governance.
Amb. Dada maintained that it is a thing of pride and urged every Nigerian in the Diaspora to partake in it, as one of the critical tools to encourage the Diaspora for national development, which is in line with the vision, mission and mandate of NiDCOM.
The Chairman/CEO of the Commission, Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, said that the event was to create awareness and develop a collaborative agenda for the development of a credible data base of Nigerians in the Diaspora.
According to her, “it was necessary to set up a reliable and scalable data base of the Nigerian Diaspora to provide for engagement of the Nigerian Diaspora in the policies, project and programmes of the Nigerian government at all levels.
Dabiri-Erewa further asserted that in 2020, the Commission started the establishment of data mapping sites which served, as the foremost capturing platform for raw data in over 10 countries and it is expected at least 20 countries I 2021.
The NiDCOM Boss, said that the Commission is investing in high-tech mechanisms such as AI systems and advanced data analytic systems in order to recognise and bring Nigerian Diaspora together.
Mr. Franz Celestin, the Chief of Mission, International Organisation for Migration (IOM), said that the launch of the data mapping platform is a historical moment for the Commission, the Nigerian Diaspora and the country.
Celestin maintained that this will bring potentials, encourage Diaspora to invest, identify the socio-demographic spread and economic profile of its Diaspora.
He encouraged Nigerians in the Diaspora to make optimum use of this great opportunity. This was corroborated by the representative of the European Union Elena Zezelidou who commended NIDCOM’s dedication and commitment to ensuring Diaspora Portal is launched as well as the ratification of The National Diaspora Policy by the Federal Executive Council.
The Head of Technology, Transfer and Innovation (TTI) Department,(NIDCOM) Hon. Abdulrahman Terab, said the platform is specially designed to be user-friendly, with seamless questions, aimed at sorting, marking and analysing data, used to make sense of the future.
Meanwhile, Nigerians in Diaspora can log on to _www.nidcom.gov.ng/registry_ to access the portal. As at time of inauguration, about a Hundred Nigerians in the Diaspora have registered.
Media, Public Relations and Protocols Unit.