By Oluwatobi Opusunju
The Nigerian government has announced plans to set up a technology and innovation advisory council to foster an enabling environment for technology startups in Nigeria. Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo disclosed this yesterday on the sidelines of his visit to tech companies and hubs in Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial nerve centre and Africa’s blooming tech ecosystem.
Osinbajo who was accompanied by the Minister of Science & Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu and the Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) Dr. Isa Ali Ibrahim Pantami on tour of the tech companies and hubs noted that the advisory council will help harness and support tech and innovation among the teeming Nigerian youth in order to drive growth in the sector.
“Already, we have an Industrial and Competitiveness Council. But what we want to look at is doing one for technology and one for innovation as well so that we bring in some of the key players and thinkers around technology, working with the government and working with government officials to develop policy and to develop all of the various ways by which we can help them to do what they are doing better,” he said.
Osinbajo also disclosed that the federal government, having recognized technology as cash cow and enabler of many enterprises was already working in partnership with some hubs to create the needed environment for them to thrive and prosper.
The hubs include the Civic Hub in Abuja, the Climate Change Hub and the North East Hub, which focuses on the use of technology and innovation to tackle humanitarian challenges in North East Nigeria. He added that the government is also planning to include the Co-Creation Hub (CC-Hub), one of the hubs he visited on in Lagos among the number of hubs it is working with.
Other hubs and tech companies the vice president visited were Paystack , Andela, Farm Crowdy, Flutterwave, Workstation and African Fintech Foundry.