The Nigeria Summit 2014 which comes at the point Nigeria is celebrating 100 years since the amalgamation of the southern and northern protectorates by Lord Lugard is currently holding in Nigeria organised by the The Economist Magazine and supported by Oando, Accenture, P&G, Hangar 8, Etisalat, First Bank, GTBank, Siemens and Standard Chartered.
The summit which kicked off in grand style promises days of really impactful discussion with the summit theme being centered on how Nigeria can take steps towards a greater prosperity.
Day One had some very important panels planned with top government officials such as Hon Akinwumi Adeshina, Minister of Agriculture, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Hon Omobola Johnson, Minister of Communications Technology, Federal Republic of Nigeria; former government officials such as Muhammad Ali Pate, Visiting Professor, Duke Global Health Institute and former Minister of State for Health, Nigeria; and other business professionals such as George Oyebode, Chairman of Okomu Oil Palm Company, Acha Leke, Director, Mckinsey & Company, Sim Shagaya, CEO of Konga.com amongst other.
Hon Omobola Johnson, Minister of Communications Technology speaking on “Nigeria and the digital economy” gave a very good account of how much work her ministry had been able to achieve since she resumed office and how her ministry was working in collaboration with the private sector to fully make Nigeria the centre for ICT development in Africa, setting an example for other African countries to follow. She noted that even though Kenya is current revered as a top ICT destination in Africa, as a result of the activities of her ministry, Nigeria was beginning to turn the curve and noted some of the major conferences and meet ups that would hold in Nigeria this year.
A panel session moderated by Vladmir Duthiers, International CNN Correspondent, CNN involving the minister, Stephane Bacquaert, Managing director of Investments and Secretary of the Investment Committee, Wendell Group; Acha Leke, Director, Mckinsey & Company, and Sim Shagaya, Founder, Konga.com was held where questions from members of the audience were entertained.
One of the members of the audience noting the current political climate of the country, asking about the sustainability of some of the amazing reforms that have come under the minister to which the minister spoke about how the speed and the measures being put in place by her ministry will ensure that political risk would not affect the development of the ICT sector in Nigeria. The minister also went further to talk about the power of the private sector in helping meet some of the goals that the ministry has set up emphasizing that the government does not have the capacity to build some of the things that are necessary for the sector to grow. She also talked about the importance of investment in the sector by both local and foreign investors and her belief that the sector would only continue to grow bigger with their involvement.