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FG to build six knowledge factories across Nigeria

FG to build six knowledge factories across Nigeria

It appears that both the federal and state governments are beginning to realise that the knowledge economy stands a better chance of lifting the Nigerian economy again rather than the oil windfall.

This is considering the investments the federal government and some of its state counterparts are committing to intellectual property, IP and innovative knowledge hubs in recent times.

National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA, has made different investments ranging from training the youths on IT innovation, building capacity, to supporting tech start-ups on software or mobile application development.

However, the federal government had come out to categorically state that it was going to build innovation centres, at least one in each geo-political zone. Minister of Communications Technology, Mr. Adebayo Shittu recently reiterated government’s willingness to engender a pervasive ICT knowledge among the youths across the country, arguing that the best and easiest way to go about it was to scatter knowledge factories everywhere in the country. “Our policies are geared towards using Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) as a catalyst for innovation in every sector of the economy.

“A key part of my road-map is the establishment of new innovation hubs and support for existing ones as Innovation hubs serve as magnets for high-end thinkers and a birth place for ideas and channels for investment.

“They are crucial in the Federal Government’s drive to create jobs, generate wealth and increase revenue. We will keep our promise to create new hubs across the country and strengthen existing hubs for greater effectiveness. We are conscious of the need to support these hubs by creating a virile ICT Innovation Ecosystem within the country”.

Adebayo was speaking in Delta state, during the official unveiling its innovation Hub in Asaba, the state capital recently.

His promise tallied with the hint dropped earlier by Vice president Yemi Osinbajo, at the second Foundation Lecture of the Elizade University in Ilara-Mokin, Ondo State recently.

Osinbajo said that “this year, we are establishing technology hubs across the country. Two super hubs in Abuja and Lagos and 6 regional hubs in the six geopolitical zones. In partnership with several technology companies the hubs will be fully resourced with infrastructure and capacity building”,

Meanwhile the idea has excited many Nigerians who believe that if properly executed, the hubs would reactivate the economy and place Nigeria on the top list of strong world economies.

However, they also warned that should government pay lip service or play politics with any promise that has to do with knowledge or capacity building, it would lose the confidence and participation of the youths in nation building – a risk that could lead to stunted growth and whittle down the influence of Nigeria in Africa and the world.

An indigenous app developer, Patrick Unongo said: “I am very excited to hear about government’s plans to build innovation hubs across the country. That would be the best thing this government can do for itself and the entire Nigerians because it has the capacity to create employment, wealth and reactivate the economy at the same time. But if they play politics with it, the youths would lose interest in nation building and that is a risk capable of also reducing Nigeria’s influence in Africa and the world” he added.

Link: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2016/08/fg-build-six-knowledge-factories-across-nigeria/

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