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NDPC Set to Develop Framework for Implementation of Data Protection Act

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Following the signing of the Nigeria Data Protection Act into law by President Bola Tinubu, The Nigeria Data Protection Commission (NDPC) says it is set to develop a standardized framework for implementation, to ensure consistency and clarity across all sectors.

National Commissioner, NDPC, Dr Vincent Olatunji, made this known at a press conference on the implementation of Nigeria Data Protection Act 2023, on Monday, in Abuja.

Olatunji said the Commission would be expanding its active public awareness campaigns to educate and empower organizations and individuals as regards their roles, rights, and responsibilities under the Act.

The NDPC Boss also revealed that the Commission would improve capacity-building opportunities for Data Protection Officers under the the National Data Protection Adequacy Programme(NaDAP), thereby enhancing their ability to lead their organizations towards compliance.

“This journey towards nationwide compliance will be guided by several key initiatives and future developments. Within the last two quarters of this year, we are vigorously pursuing the following targets:

“Development of Implementation Framework: Standardization is vital. Hence, we will be developing a standardized framework for implementation, ensuring consistency and clarity across all sectors.

“This will involve guidance notices on key provisions of the law particularly those that relate to lawful basis of data processing, data subjects rights, compliance audit returns and cross-border data transfer.

“Capacity-building for Data Protection Officers (DPOs): Our DPOs are the frontline soldiers in this endeavour.

“Issuance of DPCO Practice Guidelines and Sectorial Guidance Notices: We will strengthen our regulatory frameworks for DPCOs and issue sector-specific guidelines particularly for financial and telecom sectors”, Olatunji said.

According to NDPC CEO, more DPCOs will be licensed to provide services and make the ecosystem competitive.

Other implementation plans lined up by the Commission are: Upscale of Registration Process for data controllers and data processors, this Olantunji noted would simplify compliance pathways and encourage participation. In addition is the introduction of Compliance Audit Filing Calendar.

Olatunji however urged Nigerians not to see the move to make data protection a statutory requirement, as a burden but a call to building robust data protection structures, and strengthening Nigeria’s place in the global digital economy landscape.

He said the change in legislation was not merely an addendum to it’s law books, but a transformative step towards shaping a culture where the protection of personal data is a cherished principle.

Olatunji noted that with President Bola Tinubu, setting an achievable target of creating 1 million jobs through the Digital Economy sector, Nigerians will be embracing a new era of data protection where respect for personal data becomes an integral part of national culture.

He said measures were being put in place to create 500, 000 jobs into the data protection ecosystem. This he noted would serve as 50% of the job creation target for the sector.

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