There is no doubt that Nigeria is one of the most developed countries on the continent of Africa. In spite of its current economic recession, it still leads the continent in various social and economic sectors. There is, however, serious doubts as to whether or not it is capable if leading the continent in the field of technology. In my view, I think that Nigeria is capable of leading Africa in the field of technology for the following reasons.
Availability of numerous youths with interest in technological
One of the things that stand Nigeria in good stead to lead the African continent in technology is the availability of numerous youths in Nigeria, who are interested in technology. There are many young Nigerians that are exposed to tech gadgets at an early age these days and this spurs innovative tendencies in these young ones. If these set of innovative young Nigerians are well coordinated and well directed, they will form the launching pad of a tech revolution that is capable of engulfing the country as well as take the whole of Africa by storm. It will interest you to note that some Nigerian youths have succeeded in developing some tech devices and are also providing some online services that have gone international in patronage.
Availability of Venture Capitalists to provide funding
It is one thing to innovate and yet another to actually get the products and services that are developed through these innovations to be produced and marketed to the final consumers. There is no gainsaying the fact that many innovators are not financially buoyant to produce and market these because the processes are not cheap to cone by. This is where Venture Capitalists come in and Nigeria has abundance of these. They are ready to invest in the ideas and innovations after proper assessment of the business plan and other prospects.
A ready market to dispose products and services
The fact that the Nigerian population, which now stands at about 200 million and one sixth of the entire population of the African continent, is a huge plus for the country in the development of innovative products and services because these innovators are assured of disposing them off to the large population in Nigeria after going into production. The large population in Nigeria encourages the consumption of technological products and services supplied and this gives impetus for many tech enthusiasts to venture into innovating. Other African countries and the rest of the world will also benefit from these products. It is no wonder, then, that Nigeria is considered as a huge market for the products and services of different world renowned manufacturers of various gadgets such as smartphones, computers and cameras.
Establishing of ICT Hubs
Nigeria presently has a number of ICT Hubs spread across the country. These ICT Hubs provide a co-creation environment that is conducive for the generation of ideas that can be moulded into useful innovations. The Nigerian government is also planning on establishing ICT Hubs in all States in the country. Some State governments, such as Delta State for instance, have already set up ICT Hubs in their respective States.
These are, no doubt, laudable moves by the governments at those levels. Many tech industry operators are, however, of the opinion that instead of the government venturing into setting up ICT Hubs itself, it should rather encourage the private sector to set these up and run them effectively with the government merely creating the enabling environment to make it easy for these Hubs to be set up.
Other players in the industry also think that the government should carry this out through a Public Private Partnership arrangement, with the management of these Hubs left in the hands of tech experts. Either way, the establishment of ICT Hubs is a sure way to fast-tracking ideas and innovations to becoming realities in Nigeria, thus, positioning the country to be in the lead of technological breakthroughs in Africa.
This can be achieved through the setting up of mechanisms that are capable of recognising talents early