This Day (Lagos)

Nigeria: Ovia Challenges Nigerian Youths On Software Innovation

Co-chairman, Presidential Committee on Broadband Development, Mr. Jim Ovia, has urged Nigerian youths to be more innovative in developing software applications that will solve basic Information and Communications Technology (ICT) challenges in the country.

Ovia, who is a former Chief Executive Officer of Zenith Bank and Founder of Visafone, one of the leading Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operators in the country, made the call at this year's Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON) President Dinner organized by the software institute in Lagos recently.

According to him, the private sector remained the driver of economies and the Nigerian youths should use the opportunity of the private sector led-economy to be innovative and develop applications that would address basic principles that would bring about economic development in the country.

Ovia, who delivered the keynote address at the ISPON President Dinner, encouraged the youths to draw inspiration from successful technology savvy people like Mark Zukerbeg, the founder of Facebook, among others and develop strong passion for technology innovation, especially in the area of software development.

"Passion and not the 'Get Rich Quick Syndrome' is what will drive ICT and enhance development," Ovia said, and encouraged youths to learn how to write various software codes that will drive the Nigerian economy.

Ovia, who decried the low infrastructure and broadband penetration in the country, called on government to lay more broadband fibre optic cables across the country to enable Nigerian youths have enough capacity and access to the internet, through availability of broadband.

"Access to broadband is not cheap in Nigeria and the cost of broadband cannot drop because it is still expensive to deploy and largely because of its limitations at the hinterlands," Ovia said.

Speaking on the power of new technologies, Ovia said new technologies rule the world. He gave example of how Apple and Samsung were fast taking over the mobile device market from Nokia and Blackberry that are now trying to survive because their products are no more on high demand as a result of new technologies in Android and iOS operating systems embraced by Samsung and Apple respectively. He therefore advised Nigerian youth to think of new technologies that will drive the Nigerian economy as well as their own well-being.

"Today, Apple and Samsung have taken over the consumer mobile device market in the area of Smartphone that are driven by smart software applications. New technologies will continue to rule the world, and for Nigeria to be part of the technology growth, its youths should continue to innovate in new technologies," Ovia said.

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