By Emmanuel Elebeke
The Director General, National Information Technology Development Agency NITDA Kashifu Inuwa Abdulahhi, says the agency is engaging in the economic diversification plan of federal government basically to create prosperity by designing a high value market chain for our local production.
Abdullahi stated this at the National Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (NCAIR) Office, Wuye when he hosted delegates from the Federal University of Technology, Minna led by the Vice Chancellor, Professor Abdullahi Bala.
He explained that technological ecosystem comprises of the Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SME’s) which grow lineally and the Innovative Driven Enterprises (IDE’s) which grow exponentially and have a broader market, adding that innovation is the best mechanism in creating prosperity.
He further said that most of the developed and wealthy nations do not depend on their natural resources but on creative innovations.
Abdullahi expressed his delight at the University’s intention in seeking more collaboration, a synergy which he described as strategic in sustaining a digital economy, prepare the students for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, boost Industrialization as a whole to move the country forward.
He said that the creation of an ICT hub for universities in all the geo-political zones which included the Federal University of Technology, Minna was in line with the NCAIR’s mandate of collaborating with universities in empowering youths.
“Graduates are unemployable these days because all they know is theory and will always need additional training upon employment but exposing them to these technology advancements will broaden their knowledge and give them the opportunity to conceptualize their ideas,” he said.
The NITDA boss stated that minimal capital is needed to be a part of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and that is the purpose of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Centre, to devise ways in which fundamental technology can be used to solve problems and create prosperity.
Earlier in his speech, Professor Abdullahi Bala said that the purpose of the visit was to thank the Agency for its intervention of IT Hub to the university which has been built and commissioned for use and also to leverage on the cordial relationship between the Agency and the University in exploring more collaborative opportunities for productive interactions in Research, Innovation and Development in Emerging technologies.
He assured the DG that the University has scaled its capacity to further collaborate and complement the efforts of NITDA by creating an International Centre for Emerging Technology, an initiative which he believes, in collaboration with the NCAIR will focus on areas of Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Capacity Building, Research and Development.
Prof. Bala said that the University has all it takes to train NITDA scholars in post graduate studies and admonished them to come occasionally as visiting lecturers to interact with their students.