Canvasses for data/identity bank for Nigerians
An international data statistician, Mr Adewale Omoniyi, has charged Nigerian professionals and experts in the diaspora to look back and contribute to the development and growth of the country using the wide range of experiences and exposure they have garnered in their respective fields of endeavour.
According to him, Nigerian professionals abroad cannot afford to look the other way because home is where the heart is, adding that, their advance skills should be injected to solve myriads of problems currently plaguing the country.
Omoniyi, who is a certified data analyst, said in an interaction with newsmen on how to reposition Nigeria that the country possesses egg heads in different fields abroad and these Nigerians are making giant strides in their adopted countries.
“Nigeria needs to tap into the vastness, dynamism, and influence that her citizens abroad are dishing out daily to develop the economies and wellbeing of Western countries.
The reality is that the map of the world is dotted with Nigerian expertise in engineering, medicine, science, technology, and the like, these skills and their attendant influence should be shipped back to Nigeria to address the dearth of social services and basic infrastructure.
“For example, some of us abroad have been able to develop different programmes and software that can decisively take care of the issue of data identity of individuals and activities of the government.
“The primary but salient challenge facing Nigeria is the issue of identification of the citizens. In developed countries, a data bank takes care of everything; security, infrastructure, economic planning, education among others.”
While cautioning against seeing Nigerians abroad from the prism of generating only foreign remittance for the country, Omoniyi, who contested the 2019 governorship election in Ogun State said: “Many of us out there are patriotic to a fault to Nigeria and believe so much in our fatherland.”
Urging the Federal Government through the newly established Nigerians in Diaspora Commission under the chairmanship of Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa to ensure that a research-friendly environment is created for Diaspora citizens aiming to contribute their quota.
“I must say that Mrs Dabiri-Erewa is doing a fantastic job and must be commended. I urge her to do more by ensuring that the government looks for more diaspora professionals with advanced skills.
“The truth is that all nations of the world are built by their own people and not by foreigners. If the operating environment is conducive, Nigerians would return to this country in droves. Professionals need key requirements to function optimally.
For example, a new approach should be floated to relax the NYSC requirements for many Nigerians who had their first degree abroad. Many of them complain bitterly of that inhibition. These little restrain may keep many of our foreign trained citizens out of the nation-building project,” he said.