CAPDAN backs Lagos State deal to relocate Computer Village

CAPDAN backs Lagos State deal to relocate Computer Village

CAPDAN backs Lagos State deal to relocate Computer Village

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The Computer and Allied Product Dealers Association of Nigeria () says its on same page with Lagos State as the government finally close a concession deal to relocate businesses in , the nation’s largest technology market cluster, to the proposed ICT Park at Katangowa in Lagos.

Mr Ahmed Ojukutu, President of the umbrella body of the nation’s largest technology market cluster, CAPDAN, tells  in an exclusive interview that the issue of movement has been on the table for 12 years now, but just only two weeks ago, a concession agreement was signed between the concessioner and , and the association was invited to be a witness to what he cites as a “bold step laying the foundation for what is about to come.”

The future ICT Park is envisioned to be located on a 21-hectares of land at Agbado Oke-Odo CDA in Alimosho LGA, but no date has been set for its completion, the CAPDAN President tells Technology Times.

”That is a very bold step laying the foundation for what is about to come. Moving to the next level, we will be working on a relationship between us and the developer and the government to look at this instance and make things work out so the issue of moving to Katangowa is understood by us”, Ojukutu tells Technology Times.

Mr Ahmed Ojikutu, President of Computer and Allied Product Dealers Association of Nigeria (CAPDAN) says in interview with Technology Times that the body is on same page with Lagos State Government to relocate businesses in Ikeja to Katangowa in Lagos.

The Lagos State Government has in a previous announcement said that the project is being pursued under its ambitious Smart City plan hoped to transform the state into a technology-driven mega city that manage assets and resources more efficiently.

”That is a very bold step laying the foundation for what is about to come. Moving to the next level, we will be working on a relationship between us and the developer and the government to look at this instance and make things work out so the issue of moving to Katangowa is understood by us”, Ojukutu tells Technology Times during the interview held at the association’s secretariat in Lagos.

According to him, ”the government has given us their word that at every step, we will be carried along. That is why we were invited to witness it. So the market will definitely move but it will be in gradual process and it will be communicated.

“What is paramount to us as an association is everybody in the present day Computer Village, so that even that woman that is squatting with somebody and the man with a small table will be factored in into the movement. That is what can make us have our economy of scale that we have right now and that is the position that we have”, he adds.

Technology Times checks reveal that Lagos State Government plans the new Computer (and allied) Business Park at Katangowa on a 21 hectares parcel of land that involves “the construction of the new Computer (and allied) business of 3,500 small, medium and big size showroom/office spaces and 3750 k-klamps (in an open floor arrangement) in an enclosed mall type building or series of linked buildings for a total floor space of 84,000 sq m, provided with infrastructure and ancillary facilities in atrium space with green roof and terraces.”

Speaking on some other related issues, the CAPDAN President tells Technology Times that as at today, the daily turnover in Computer Village is about N1.5 billion and “we have over 125,000 transactions online and offline on a daily basis.”

Technology Times file shows a group of mobile phone technicians in Computer Village in Ikeja, Lagos
Technology Times file shows technicians in Computer Village in Ikeja, Lagos

The CAPDAN President who gave a sneak peek into what the project is going to look like says “the idea of the ICT park is that we want it to be the biggest, the largest and the most sophisticated. It is going to be a buying and selling hub. It’s going to be an innovation hub. There’s going to be a research centre and it is going to be an ICT centre for people that have gone for Western education at the four walls of a university or polytechnic and have come to have a practical experience. So these and many more is what we expect.

He explains further that, “there’s going to be a free broadband planned with the conceptualization of the project from the beginning. So fiber optics will be run automatically for that centre. Dedicated megabits will be given to that hub and what we are planning is to achieve a free wireless hub.

“This and many more. So we are seeing to be driven with this ICT Park going forward. What this is going to create is that environment structured and planned for ICT. That is our expectation and we are expecting that hub to be the key to national development.”

Speaking on some other related issues, the CAPDAN President tells Technology Times that as at today, the daily turnover in Computer Village is about N1.5 billion and “we have over 125,000 transactions online and offline on a daily basis.”

“By the year 2015 to 2016, the shocker of recession came to me and we understand that these are things that will come. What happened was so many foreigners that were operating in the ecosystem, they could not stand when the exchange rate was going up, they had actually imported at low prices in dollars now when the money was going up, and they were losing money.

“So many ran into problem but we as don’t have a choice. We can’t leave. So we were able to do trend analysis and training to know that these things will come and go. So by the time there was stability by 2017, there were people on ground to take advantage. So people who lost money were able to quickly recover”, he adds.

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Kolade Akinola Technology Journalist at Technology Times Mobile: + 234 (0) 807 401 6027

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