Nigeria Strengthens ‘Start Ups’, Carries Campaign Round The Country

By Ahmad Umar

Gombe (Nigeria) – Director General of the Nigerian Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Ali Isa Pantami, has stressed the need for Nigeria to stop relying on oil and gas for economic development

Pantami was peaking with Journalists in an interview in Gombe, northeast of the Country on Saturday at a sideline of a training program on ICT.

Pantami lamented that oil and gas had continued to remain the main source of revenue for Nigeria, when other countries have since diversified and expressed fear that “Any country that relies on oil and gas without thinking of how to diversify its economy, the future is very dark.

“As far as we continue to rely on oil and gas in this country our feature is very dark. Many nations have since discovered ICT as an alternative for oil and gas while here in Nigeria, ICT is the second to oil and gas, making our GDP to be around 10.26%, he added.

He said the best way for us to develop the ICT is to ensure that, “we are not only ICT consumers but ICT producers” explaining that the training programmes are called ‘Start up Friday’, ‘Start up Clinic’ and ‘Start up Nigeria” organized as a training and competition events.

“We will visit each and every zone of the country to identify young talented Nigerians that have the potentials of making the country proud through their ICT ideas, we will select them through competitions, we train them, we mentor them and at the end of the event we select the best of them and we can see how we can keep in touch with them and we even take them to international events, where their ideas can be presented.

The wisdom behind this, he said, is to build Nigeria’s ICT Eco system to ensure that the country is not only an ICT consumer but ICT producer saying, “We are extending to all Local Governments in the country, and whenever we intend to organize in one zone we ensure that all states participate and we make sure the message reaches their local governments, through that, anyone who has an idea will come forward to present”.

“We contact universities and all higher institutions of learning to get those that are willing to participate and sometimes if we see they have the idea we even invite them. Many people have benefited from our programme in North East through our scholarship for Msc, PhD through our internship programme even recently, about 3 months ago, over 250 people benefited from the North East alone and this in this competition, 12 people participated”

He then called on youth to stop redundancy pointing out that ; “each and every one of us was blessed by God with a certain talent and therefore they should wake up to use their talent so that they become employers of labour and not to be employed”.

The training program in Gombe, northeast zone is the third in the series. The first was conducted in Kaduna, northwest, followed by Lagos for the southwest.

Posted by on 10/12/2017. Filed under Development, ICT, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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