Lagos State Government has proved its interest in technology development with the establishment of Knowledge, Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (KITE) in Yaba.
The centre is linked to the $24 million investment of Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, in Nigerian start-ups, which brought him to the country in 2016.
Commissioner for Science and Technology, Hakeem Fahm, disclosed this at the commencement of the Yaba information and communication technology (ICT) cluster. Tagged KITE@Yaba, the initiative includes the design and construction of a world class ICT park for which Lagos had already acquired 30,000 square metres of land in Yaba, he added.
According to him, the project aims to provide enabling environment for the development of a technology cluster, contribute significantly to Nigeria’s economy and position Lagos as the hub for innovation in Nigeria, as well as preferred technology destination.
Fahm said the initiative would be a public-private partnership (PPP), driven by the government and industry experts along the technology value chain.
His words: “The project will proffer recommendations to the Lagos State Government on eight critical areas namely access to funding; access to market and demand; policy regulation and governance; talent, skills and education; research and development; network and collaboration; advocacy and marketing and infrastructure.”
The project’s governance structure comprises Project Steering Committee (PSC) and Industry Advisory Board (IAB).
Inaugurated in June 2018, the IAB is chaired by former Minister of Communication and Technology, Omobola Johnson. It comprises notable stakeholders like CcHub, Google, Microsoft, MainOne, Andela, Flutterwave, General Electric (GE), Ibile Broadband, University of Lagos, and Lagos State University.
The IAB will provide overall leadership and direction to the project, to ensure the realisation of its objectives.
Johnson, who welcomed the involvement of the private sector in the initiative, said: “Lagos State is already well-known as the enterprise and commercial hub of the country. KITE@Yaba will further drive technology innovation and entrepreneurship, and will directly contribute to the development of a digital economy in Nigeria.”