BudgiT, a major provider of public data has predicted that Information and Communication Technology (ICT) will be a major game changer in creating job for the teeming unemployed youths in Nigeria.
Technology adoption will greatly accelerate the pace of development in Nigeria, facilitate increased non-oil trade and also enhance the digital economy, Mr Samuel Atiku,Head of Research at Budgit says.
BudgiT is a civic startup that liberates budgets and public data from an inactive state into a more engaging format, mostly through info-graphics and interactive application with the aim of improving civic discussions and institutional reform.
Atiku says the ICT industry had significantly increased Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), noting that the sector had in recent time provided more employment opportunities than the country’s oil and gas sector.
Recently, the Nigeria Communications Commission said that the quarterly contribution of the ICT sector to Nigeria’s GDP increased to N1.6 trillion from N1.4 trillion, making the sector to be contributing nearly 10 per cent to the GDP annually.
“The Federal Government’s diversification agenda should be approached from an education perspective, ” the BudgiT executive says. “In Nigeria, about 75 per cent of the population is below the age of 40,It is not out of place for the government to have agenda to train about 10 million youths to become software developers within two years.
“We are yet to take full advantage of the possibilities of an ICT-driven education in Nigeria,In the U.S., for instance, there is a labour plan to train about three million people to become software developers” ,Atiku noted.
According to him “ICT sector cut into education, publishing, broadcasting, newspapering and others. “Information communication and technology is bigger than it looks.”
He pointed out that the research that the universality of ICT has made it an indispensable media for transacting every aspect of human and material resources in the world.
“This trend of development has provided significant changes in the lives of thousands of youths in the developing world’’ , he adds.
Speaking in same vein Mr Jide Awe, Chairman Conferences Committee, Nigeria Computer Society said the ICT sector had contributed significantly to the country’s GDP and much employment opportunities had been created through innovation in the ICT sector.
He also said that a lot of transactions had been made seamless through the use of ICT.
In his words “In the financial sector, the systems of payments are more efficient; money transfer can be done online within the comfort of your home”.
“One cannot ignore the improvements in infrastructure because, now, we have internet access which has enabled creation of applications such as financial and tech apps. The telecoms sector, especially, has created tonnes of jobs for our youths,’’ he said.
Stating the impacts made by ICT, Awe said ICT cut across governance, financial system, educational, agriculture and more,ICT is becoming a norm; this is evident in countries such as Singapore, Japan, China and India, where ICT is making tremendous impacts.”
“The government needs to create an environment for more local ICT production,” he adds.