Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Nigeria Gains Control of ".ng" Domain

Nigerian individuals and businesses can now register their Internet domain names locally and have them identified as such, rather than having to channel the process through the United States of America and bear foreign or ambiguous appellations.
The protocols for the change over were effected last Wednesday , May 13.
Kalu Ndukwe, President of the Nigeria Internet Registration Association (NIRA) announced at the weekend that: "At exactly 4pm GMT May 13, 2009 VeriSign made the ICANN approved root server changes to the .ng ccTLD (Nigerian Country Code Top Level Domain Name ) a few hours later ICANN/IANA ( the Internet Council for Assigned Names and Numbers/Internet Assigned Numbers Authority) effected the board approved redelegation of the Nigerian ccTLD on the IANA website".
According to him: "This effectively brings to an end the long drawn desire and expectation of the Nigerian Internet community to effect redelegation of the .ng ccTLD and full local management."
The .ngccTLD is Nigeria's' identity in the cyberspace and this handing over implies that internet names registered here will end in the appellation '.ng' which properly identifies them as Nigerian, rather than the current trend whereby they bear appellation such as '.com' or '.co.uk' or other ambiguous or foreign appellations.
Commenting on the development, Lanre Ajayi, president, Nigeria Internet Group (NIG) who is also on the board of NIRA said in an exclusive interview with Business Day : "The implication is that people can now register their domain names through the local registrars instead of the registrar in the US. The significance is that we have control of our domain name. Before now that was done in the US and that was not good enough for our national pride.
"This is coming several years after several other African countries have taken control of their domain names. Incidentally, we were doing it for free. Now, we are going to pay because the registrars are business people and they are there to give value and make a living.
"The costs will be competitive and quite affordable because you have 29 registrars competing in this space. You have the registry, the registry and the registrant. The registry manages the domain name, the registrars are the middlemen who will render service to the registrants, who are people like you and I who want to register a name or presence.
"It is not a super money generating machine. The concept is to promote internet penetration and local content, not money generation. The money will come with the development of local content and e-business."
Kalu Ndukwe, the NIRA president observed that the .ng ccTLD journey started in 1995 with the first delegation to Ibukun Odusote as the then admin contact." By 2004 with the intervention of the former president of Nigeria Chief Olusegun Obasanjo the Nigerian Internet community represented by the G22 reached a consensus on a not for profit all inclusive body to manage the .ng ccTLD. With the formation and final election of the NIRA executive board in May 2007 the stage was then set for conclusion of the redelegation process and fully localize the management of the ng ccTLD
"Faced with a lot of challenges as a totally new entity the executive had to concentrate on putting in place the required structure and infrastructure that would sustain the .ng ccTLD. Today that effort has paid off as the .ng ccTLD would be offering its domains in the ccTLD with the most robust technical infrastructure in Africa.
"The .ng ccTLD is the only ccTLD with multiple anycast name servers offering local resolutions of .ng domain in over 40 cities in five continents with a 100 percent uptime guarantee. Not only that, Nigeria is the second country in Africa to have a fully automated registry with full EPP access making it of global standard that allows registrars from all over the world to interact with it.
" In simple lay man terms what this means is that with the Nigerian registry anyone can register a .ng in seconds and be sure that the name would always be available and visitors to our websites would get translations of our domain names in over 40 local cities making for better web experience".

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