The 2016 edition of TechPlus conference and exhibition, which started yesterday in Lagos, has beckoned on Nigeria to increase its contribution to the growth of technology globally for improved competitiveness.
The forum, which had thousands of participants, including exhibitors and youths, said Nigeria’s competitiveness would be measured by her innovation.
Speaking on behalf of Lagos State government, a director from the Ministry of Science and Technology, representing the Commissioner, Jide Adenuga, said the theme of the conference- ‘A Connected World’, seeks to create a platform for more technology innovations to come on board.
He stressed that the benefit of technology cuts across all the sectors of the economy, stressing that the time has come for Nigeria to come up with innovations that would disrupt the technology world.
TechPlus, which is in its second year in the country, according to Adenuga, is novel because of the immense contribution it would bring to Nigeria’s technology space.
According to him Lagos is currently harnessing all forms of technology within its ambit to make the state more efficient.
For example, he said land acquisition processes have been automated to reduce challenges involved in getting even the Certificate of Occupancy, stressing that the technology has improved service delivery in the state.
In his address, the Chief Executive Officer, Connect Marketing Limited, the organiser, Tunji Adeyinka, technology has huge capacities to create lots of jobs if well harnessed.
Adeyinka said the TechPlus engagement is to ensure the ordinary people in all sectors of the economy see the functionality of technology and how it impacts their lives.
He stressed that there was need for Nigeria to be inventors of new technologies and not just user.
While calling on the youths to see technology as a springboard for the next phases of growth in the country, Adeyinka said all efforts must be channeled towards the realisation of this plan.
Speaking as a panelist, President, Advertisers Association of Nigeria (ADVAN), David Okeme, said businesses must embrace technology to stay afloat.
Okeme said technology and digital social connectivity has enabled business model across member companies.
“Many are engaging in multiple conversations across both traditional and dynamic communication modes. Mobile is the medium of choice. All are future proofing the business with technology”, he stated.
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To Kamran Elahian, an Innovation Catalyst, Nigeria should prepare for greater innovation and disruptive. According to him, new technologies are coming in 3G, 4G and 5G, “all that is required to do is to use one’s brain to be able to create a disruptive innovation that will break monopolies.”
Meanwhile, the National Information and Technology Development Agency (NITDA), while relying of data from the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) revealed that Nigeria spends $1 billion yearly on software imports, many of which have local substitutes.
NITDA’s Femi Adeluyi, who revealed this at another panel session at the event, further disclosed that 80 per cent of the request made to Nigeria’s NOTAP is for foreign software.
According to him, the time has come for Nigeria to disrupt the technology world by inventing technologies that innovates and disrupts the existing way of doing things.