Okonjo-Iweala, Twitter CEO ask young Nigerians to focus on technology to create jobs

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Co-founder and CEO of social media service, Twitter, and mobile payments company, Square, Jack Dorsey, has rounded up his visit in Nigeria after days of extensive interactions with the country’s growing community of techpreneuers. He was in Nigeria with about 14 Twitter staff.

In Lagos, Dorsey extolled the stubborn spirit of Nigerian young entrepreneurs seeking for global space and value with their encouraging innovations. He said the company was in Nigeria to among many objectives; explore the possibility of accelerator program for technology entrepreneurs.

In Abuja, Dorsey and Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Nigeria’s former finance minister on the board of Twitter, challenged Nigerian youth to leverage technology tools including Twitter to build and bolster their entrepreneurship.

Dorsey was in Nigeria on the first leg of an African tour that will also take him and his team to Ethiopia, Ghana, and South Africa.

Nigeria was strategically the first point of call. The country of over 200 million people is Twitter’s largest market on the continent.

During a visit by Dorsey and Okonjo-Iweala to the African University of Science and Technology (AUST) in Abuja, the duo advised young people to focus more on creating jobs than seeking jobs. The job with marketplace has changed and young people need to relate with the global trends that requires more creativity and ability to initiate solutions than to be depended on paid employment. Okonjo-Iweala is also the Chairman, Board of Trustees of the AUST.

Prof Oye Ibidapo-Obe, the Chair, Governing Council for AUST, said the university would be glad to work with Twitter on reducing the unemployment rate in the country which he described as alarming. The Twitter’s boss said his company was in Nigeria to explore such collaborations that would enable youngle people leverage the platform to create jobs.

Earlier in Lagos, Dorsey had interacted with budding entrepreneurs inside Co-Creation Hub (CcHUB), Yaba before meeting with enthusiastic young Nigerians at the University of Lagos (UNILAG).

He asked young people to rethink their attitude to education and work, to see  technology as a tool to create new solutions and expand the frontier of business.

The Twitter CEO later visited Andela and then had a town hall meeting at Techpoint where he shared his views on Twitter plans to checkmate fake news and how the social media giant hope to leverage its strong presence in Nigeria, its biggest market on the continent, to influence the integrity of information and engage with policy makers on legislation that could impact on news-sharing.

Image: PM News

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