May 9, 2013 the BDT Director visits Nigeria with a letter of appointment for H.E. Dame (Dr) Patience Goodluck Jonathan, the First Lady of Nigeria and the President of African First Ladies Peace Mission, to become ITU’s Child Online Protection champion.
In the framework of the ITU Global Cybersecurity Agenda Mr Sanou, BDT Director, made the case that having secured our physical borders, the weakest link was now our borders in cyber-space, to protect our banks, our governments our information, but most importantly, our children against cyber-predators. He met with H.E. Dame (Dr) Patience Goodluck Jonathan, the First Lady of Nigeria and the President of African First Ladies Peace Mission to discuss cybersecurity issues and to hand her the letter of appointment to become ITU’s Child Online Protection champion. Dame Jonathan has won numerous accolades for her charitable work involving women and children, and is perfectly suited to her role as advocate for ITU’s Child Online Protection initiative.
The First Lady also committed to supporting the establishment of the ITU Cybersecurity Region Center in Nigeria and announced that she had received a letter from the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) pledging financial support for the center. Expressing ITU’s gratitude for the First Lady’s magnanimity, Mr Sanou also invited her to the ITU Global Youth Conference where she will meet the President of Costa Rica in her capacity as the Patron of Child Online Protection and the other member of the COP Patronage Group, Geena Davis, the ITU COP Special Envoy. The First Lady was also invited to visit ITU-IMPACT in whose framework the ITU Cybersecurity Regional Center would be established and also the Africa Child Online Protection Summit scheduled for February 5-7, 2014 in Uganda.
Mr Sanou also visited the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) whose role in Child Online Protection and the establishment of the ITU Cybersecurity Regional Center he knows to be crucial. Dr Eugene Juwah, the Executive Vice Chairman and CEO of NCC pledged his personal commitment and that of NCC to the two initiatives and to supporting the First Lady of Nigeria in her role as the ITU Champion for Child Online Protection (COP).
Mr Sanou paid a courtesy visit to Mr Kadré Désiré Ouedraogo, the President of ECOWAS and discussed matters of mutual interest to both organizations. It was recalled that the pilot project for the now successful Harmonization of ICT Policies in Sub-Saharan Africa (HIPSSA) was carried out in collaboration with ECOWAS. Although HIPSSA is scheduled to end its cycle in September 2013, the two leaders agreed to strongly support any bid that ITU would make to partners for a follow-up project. The difference that HIPSSA has made in the development of the ICT sector in Africa cannot be over-stated.
Mr Sanou and Mr Ouedraogo signed a landmark “Letter of Engagement” which allows for both organizations to share data and other resources in developing Digital Terrestrial Transmission Maps for the continent, which would be a resource for member-state development agendas and would provide invaluable graphical and interactive information to investors.