The Coordinator, Nigerian School of Community Networks, Haruna Hadejia, has said no fewer than 100 million Nigerians are excluded from enjoying the benefits of the Internet.
Hadejia made the statement during a press conference on the need for a citizen-driven national policy for sustainable community networks to bridge the digital divide in Nigeria.
He said, “The international dimension of the digital divide remains a major point of the global struggle for justice. This requires both developed and developing countries to work together to address it. But the internal dimension of the digital divide is what we as citizens and as a country can and should address.
“In the present context, the certainty of the internal divide of the digital divide is routinely acknowledged by the government and its agencies. By government statistics, only about half of Nigerians have access to the internet.
“This means that within the country, an estimated population of 100 million people is already left behind and excluded from the benefits of the internet.
“To buttress this point, we can provide a few illustrations for you to understand how those who are left behind from the benefits of digital technology are left behind.”
Hadejia stated that people who do not benefit from the Internet lacked access to some special interventions provided by financial institutions; usually faced difficulty to cope with computer-based exams; lacked identity as they were yet to be enrolled in the National Identity Management Commission due to lack of internet infrastructure.