The Ogun State Government has begun laying of 5000 kilometer fibre optic cable that would link the 20 local government areas of the state.
The laying of the cable was part of the three main areas in which the state was deploying resources for Information and Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructure.
The Special Assistant to the Ogun State Governor on ICT, Mr. Olakunle Akinbola, disclosed the efforts of the government at opening of a worship on ICT/E-Commerce Value Chain for stakeholders.
The workshop was sponsored by a German Development Agency, GIZ, organised in collaboration with the Bureau of Information. Technology (BIT), Ogun State, had stakeholders from Academia, Chambers of Commerce, business community, ICT companies and Government Agencies.
The workshop was organised under the heading, ” Pro-Poor Growth and Promotion of Employment in Nigeria Programme- known as SEDIN.”
Akinbola, who disclosed that the state had laid about 2000 kilometre optic cables, said the essence of the project was to make internet connectivity available to all local governments in the first instance.
He said: “The essence of the project is to have internet connectivity across the state.
“The idea is that as soon as we get into local governments, from each local government, we can now go into phase two of the project, which is to deliver the fibre connectivity to schools and hospitals so that those establishments can enjoy internet connectivity.
“We can then open the door for the private sector to come in to deliver the last mile. What we mean by the last mile is the connectivity from the local government to offices and homes.
“What that will do is that it will open the internet to everyone in the state and you can imagine the impact that will have in terms of investors coming into the state and the people of the state, small and medium enterprises being able to enjoy internet connectivity. The benefits are just endless.”
Speaking at the workshop, the Head of Component, Local Economic and Value Chains, GIZ, Sina Uti-Waziri, said the ICT Value chain in Ogun State was not only because of its high employment and income potential, but also because of the importance of moving forward into the future.
Uti-Waziri, in a remark delivered virtually said: “ICT and digitalisation from what we can see will continue to grow and will continue to be a potential for our youth to be employed and it will be the anchor around growth, around business growth, around economy and about society or making new opportunities.”
She said: “We will seek your cooperation for the government personnel for the programme and the private sector in growing and making use of new opportunities in the areas of business services and also marketing potential.
“We are looking at how to connect stakeholders. Where can we connect the personnel, where can we connect the academia, for example to make sure that everybody is part of the broad process.”
While also speaking, the Managing Director of Bariansystems LTD and Consultant to the GIZ on the project, Jude Okfita, said the programme was aimed at developing the value chain or enhancing the value chain in the ICT and e-commerce sector of this state.
He said, “GIZ is interested in raising Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs)that can scale up from where they are currently to the next level. From level zero to One or wherever they are to the next level.”