The Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Prof Umar Garba Danbatta, has yesterday paid a courtesy visit to the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero, where he urged the people of the state to continue to support the federal government’s initiatives toward ensuring peace and stability in the country.
Danbatta, an indigene of Kano, who commended the Emirate and the entire people of Kano for their unwavering support to the government, said Nigeria deserves a long period of peace and stability in order to achieve sustainable growth and development.
He said the federal government has come up with various initiatives on youth empowerment, especially through provision of digital skills and literacy.
In his remark, Bayero, who thanked the NCC boss and his entourage for the visit, commended President Muhammadu Buhari, Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Ali Isa Ibrahim Pantami and the EVC for the excellent performance of the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry.
Speaking further, the monarch pledged to continue to support the Federal Government on its developmental initiatives, urging all leaders to continue to promote peaceful coexistence in the country.
It would be recalled that, like Danbatta, various eminent leaders in Nigeria, including the Emir of Sokoto, Sultan Sa’adu Abubakar III and the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, have made similar calls on the need to maintain peace for the sustenance of socioeconomic development of Nigeria.
MTN is at the Forefront of Africa’s Fourth Industrial Revolution Charge- Ndukwe
The Chairman, MTN Nigeria Communications Plc, Dr. Ernest Ndukwe, OFR, said Nigeria’s largest mobile network operator is leading the charge for the country’s positioning for Africa’s Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).
Ndukwe in a keynote session at the African Continental Free Trade Area Strategy Workshop held on Friday, November 20, 2020, said the Fourth Industrial Revolution has the potential to raise global income levels and improve the quality of life for populations around the world.
He said while the first, second, and third industrial revolutions focused on Steam Engineering; Electrification and Assembly Line; and Computing, Internet and Nuclear Energy respectively, the 4IR is building on the third. The 4IR is characterized by a fusion of technologies that are blurring the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres.
Highlighting the opportunities presented by the 4IR in Africa, Ernest Ndukwe asserts that the revolution represents a unique opportunity for African countries to leapfrog over development hurdles with the help of technology.
Not forgetting the role that telecommunication companies play in the acceleration of the 4IR in Africa, Dr. Ndukwe elucidated on how MTN Nigeria is taking the lead on this.
The Nigerian telecommunications industry in 2020 has recorded an increase in National Broadband penetration, contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Traffic, Radio Latency, and others. MTN is leading on the tripartite levers for 4IR acceleration, which include Pervasive Broadband through advances in 5G, the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), amongst other categories.
Through innovations in these areas, the telecommunications company is at the forefront of enabling transformation through secure, high-speed connectivity and cloud solutions.
Apart from telecommunications companies, Dr. Ndukwe highlighted other drivers of 4IR on the African continent. He mentioned that African policy makers and regulators would need to use a “united vision to seize opportunities as well as create incentives for technology adoption in national priority sectors like agriculture and energy.”
He expounded on the roles of Business Associations, which include raising awareness and providing information about the potential and markets for technologies while also increasing investments in training. Dr. Ndukwe concluded that development partners would need to “finance projects on the impact of the 4IR on African economies and societies, support the creation of regional R&D centers and foster linkages with R&D centres.”s
LASG, Eko Innovation Centre Set For Art Of Technology Lagos 2.0
In line with its SMART City agenda of making Lagos a 21st century economy, the Lagos State Government through the Office of Innovation and Technology is organising the second edition of Art of Technology Lagos 2.0.
Curated by Eko Innovation Centre, the two-day conference will bring together the best of tech minds from across the globe physically and virtually on the 3rd and 4th of December 2020.
Aptly themed ‘Smart Data, SMARTER Lagos,’ AOT Lagos 2.0 will facilitate multi-stakeholder discussions, exchanges and collaborations along the data value chain as an enabler of a SMARTER Lagos.
The conversation will centre on the fundamental role data plays in connecting the city with its citizens. Together, delegates will rub minds on how data can be collected, collated, analysed and deployed for governance, commerce and development.
Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, Vice President of Nigeria will deliver the Presidential address on ‘Lagos, Driving a Smarter and Efficient Nigeria’ while Dr. Isah Ali Pantami, Honourable Minister of Communication and Digital Economy will speak on ‘Nigeria in the eyes of the world: The data approach.’
Michael Seibel, CEO and Partner, Y-Combinator; Demola Sogunle, CEO Stanbic IBTC, Lisa Da Silva, Principal Investment Officer, International Finance Corporation and Tomi Davies, CEO, TVC Labs are keynote speakers.
According to the Curator of Art of Technology Lagos 1.0 and Founder of Eko Innovation Centre, Mr. Victor Gbenga Afolabi, the two-day summit was building on the success of the maiden edition which held in 2019 and recorded over 2,000 participants in attendance. He noted that one of the key successes was the launch of the Lagos Innovation Masterplan which has continued to guide the Lagos state government in achieving its SMART City agenda.
Recall that the Lagos Master Plan was unveiled by Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Governor of Lagos State, in the company of Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, Deputy Governor, Lagos State; Mr. Hakeem Popoola Fahm, Commissioner of Science and Technology, Lagos State and Mr. Tunbosun Alake, Special Adviser, Innovation and Technology to the Governor of Lagos State.
In addition, the Governor announced a tech fund of N250 million to be managed by the Lagos State Science, Research and Innovation Council (LASRIC) headed by the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lagos of which N100 million has already been disbursed. The Open Government Initiative and Lagos State Solution Hub were also launched.
This year’s conference will feature 60 industry speakers, 50 investors and 35 experience centres. There will also be an ideathon tagged Collaborate Lagos where innovative policies and tech driven solution aimed at achieving a SMARTER Lagos will be pitched by startups.
Also expected is the launch of a new tech product by Lagos State. Interactive panel discussions led by experts will cover transportation, agriculture, environment, education and healthcare. They will engage on the understanding of data economy, the opportunities it presents and the exponential change it could trigger.
Plenary sessions will focus on exploring collaborative platforms to facilitate the sharing of the best ideas and innovations to inform policy and inspire collective action for scale and global impact.
Art of Technology Lagos 2.0 is sponsored by Access Bank with support from International Finance Corporation, Y Combinator, Lagos Innovates, Oracle, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund. Media partners are Brand Communicator and BusinessDay.
The hybrid event will happen through online VR experience [www.aotlagos.com], however the physical ‘limited edition’ part will be hosted at Eko Hotel & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos and attendance is strictly by invitation.
MTN Records $61.2bn Mobile Money Transactions In H1
MTN Group has reported that the value of Mobile Money (MoMo) transactions on its network in the first half of 2020 rose to $61.2 billion, and the group processed 11, 752 MoMo transactions a minute across its markets.
This was up 28 per cent from 9,193 transactions a minute in 2019, helping to secure financial inclusion across its markets. It said the trend has accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic.
By the end of September 2020, nearly 42 million people were regularly transacting on MTN MoMo across 16 markets. This compares to 38 million active users at the end of the first half of 2020, and 35 million at the end of 2019 – ten years after MTN launched MoMo.
Initially designed to facilitate the transfer of cash between mobile users, MTN’s MoMo offering is now much broader. The group works with numerous partners to offer services including loans, insurance, remittances and MoMo Pay, enabling customers to store money in their mobile wallets with which they can then pay for goods or services at registered merchants.
Mobile money services have grown faster in Africa than anywhere else in the world. In 2020, the trend has quickened, and the value of transactions has increased, partly supported by MTN’s reduction in MoMo transaction fees in many operations to assist customers battling the impacts of the pandemic.
The group remains committed to leveraging its technology to enable a cashless Africa. For more on MTN’s work to extend financial inclusion, watch CNBC Africa at 17.30 CAT on Wednesday 25 November, when Yolanda Cuba, MTN Group’s chief digital and fintech officer, unpacks our plans.
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