The use of Nigeria’s country code Top Level Domain (ccTLD) name, .ng, has declined despite the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NiRA)’s efforts and the government’s recent policy to compel Ministries to embrace the country’s identity in cyberspace.
Registration for the domain name-dropped to 179,420 as of May this year, according to NiRA’s data. This represents 1% decline compared with 181,176 recorded in May last year.
Between 2018 and 2019, the country’s internet asset which is being managed by NiRA had witnessed steady growth even though many Nigerian websites are still registered with foreign domain names. This had prompted NiRA to set a target of one million active web addresses on the .ng domain name in five years, starting from 2019.
Unfortunately, one year to the target deadline, the country is still having less than 200,000 websites registered on the .ng.
Some web owners premised their choice of a domain name on the advice of their web developers.
According to them, the developers always advised them to go for .com with the notion that using the .ng would mean they want to localise their business.
It is also believed that the cost of registering the Nigeria domain name is higher than that of the US.
To address the price concern, NiRA in March this year announced a 40% slash in the cost of obtaining the .ng domain name. According to the NiRA President, Mr. Muhammed Rudman, the reduction in price was to promote the agenda of the government toward the growth of Nigeria’s Digital Economy.
Highlighting other efforts to promote the .ng domain name, Rudman said NiRA has been working with critical stakeholders including government institutions such as the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy and the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), to ensure improved .ng domain name brand awareness, adoption, and support.
“Following NITDA’s readiness to compel the adoption of Nigeria’s country-code top-level domain name, especially among ministries departments and agencies (MDAs), a 14-man enforcement committee has been inaugurated to properly monitor its implementation,” he said.
Adoption For .ng Slides As Developers Shun Nigeria’s Flagship Domain
NITDA had said that in line with the policy of the nation’s digital economy, the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approved the National Second-Level Domain Policy on February 16, 2022, making it mandatory for all government-owned websites and official email correspondence of all government personnel to comply.
Stressing the role of the agency, Rudman said it has been mandated by the NITDA enabling Act 2007, to manage and administer Nigeria’s ccTLD (.ng), which gives NITDA the authority to allocate and administer the Nigerian Government Second-Level domains on .gov.ng; .edu.ng; .mil.ng; .sch.ng and any other second-level domain name that may be approved in the future.
This policy, however, has yet to yield positive results as there has been no significant increase in the registration for the domain name.