The Nigerian government wants to position the country for massive blockchain innovation and adoption. Speaking at the Digital Nigeria COnference organized by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), the DG and CEO of the agency, Kashifu Inuwa, said the agency is partnering to train 500,000 Nigerians on blockchain technology.
Nigeria is a leading market in the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry which has been driven by private enterprises without government support and regulatory clarity. The Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) had in Q3, 2020 defined cryptocurrencies as securities except for bitcoin until proven otherwise and the burden of proof is on the promoter.
However, in early 2021, the Central Bank of Nigeria published a circular prohibiting financial institutions from facilitating cryptocurrency transactions, investigating accounts associated with cryptocurrencies, and shutting them down. Despite the CBN’s position on cryptocurrency, the industry has continued to grow in the country. Recent reports put Nigeria’s interest in NFTs as number 3 globally based on Google searches.
The DG/CEO of NITDA had in 2021 despite the statement of the CBN Governor calling cryptocurrencies money out of thin air, and the CBN’s position, charged stakeholders of the information technology ecosystem to disrupt the status quo.
According to the DG, the agency views digital transformation from two lenses. One is using digital technology to enhance existing services and the delivery of rapid business innovations. And to achieve this, the DG said the agency needs startups. Innovation is a process” he said, “which is taking ideas from inception to impact which can be difficult.”
Recently, the President of Nigeria signed the Startup Bill into law. The bill now law seeks to transform the startup landscape in the country and usher the nation into an era of increased productivity and innovations.
The decision to train 500,000 Nigerians on blockchain technology will help to position Nigeria at the forefront of digital innovation even more and will drive new innovative and disruptive solutions in the blockchain industry.
The NITDA DG, once again at the Digital Nigeria Conference charged startups to solve problems that will make life better.
What do you think of this article? Share your comments below.