Welcome address delivered by Chris Uwaje(FNCS) at the National Software Conference and Competition organised by Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria(ISPON)at Tinapa,Calabar,Cross River State.
It gives me a great pleasure to welcome you all-and indeed a special honor to welcome our distinguished guests,guests of honor,members of the NITDA Board,Our keynote speakers,captains of the IT Profession and industry and in particular,the honorable minister of Communications Technonology-Mrs.Omobola Johnson(CFR) and our Chief Host,His Excellency,Senator Liyel Imoke,Governor Cross River state.ISPON is happy to have you here today at this critical moment of history in our national development.
If I make the following statements therefore,it is because ISPON is deeply concerned,involved,committed and dedicated to ensuring that Software perhaps our last development hope for this century,is transformed into a sustainable reality and a legacy for future generations.
There are certain moments in life when you can predict and in deed see the future with such clarity that nearly takes your breath away!ISPON clearly sees that positive future in Nigerian Developed Software (NDS).
Therefore,I wish to amplify the fact that no nation can succeed in the new(21st century)economy without a framework for constructive investment in, and incubation development and mastery of its indigenous software knowledge-base.
Today,software technology can simply be defined as the cement that holds the world together and no nation will succeed without earning and mastering its development,application and service dynamics.Thanks to the advances in information technology and the new media.
One can therefore rightly state that software has become-not only the vehicle but the centre of gravity of humanity’s quest to unravel the complex equation presented by the new economy,knowledge acquisition and the development processes for the emerging information society(IS).
Leaders and decision makers in government,education and business today find themselves trapped in a complex spider-web of knowledge engagement,asking key questions such as:what defines national economic success,community values,ethics,equity,progress,development,quality education,justice,wealth,prosperity etc?
Has Nigeria kept pace with a rapidly changing world in today’s global information-centric and knowledge-based economy?Are there proactive and reliable models for domain reform that we can adopt?In deed,are we capable of originating knowledge architecture as a dynamic framework and functional platform to suit our development purposes?
Your excellencies,distinguished ladies and gentlemen,ISPON views today’s gathering as a meaningful attempt to rub minds and re-examine key software issues that engage and challenge our nation and the ECOWAS sub region at various levels of her development.
As we are aware,there is a paradigm shift in global development life cycle,which was principally originated by information gathering and processing activities and currently sustained by software knowledge engineering.The industrial development era is gone and we totally lost out as a nation-making us mentally and economically dependent on global forces.Today,we live in a software-first world and must collectively engage its challenges and immense opportunities as well as master and manage its risks and national security components.
Many authors of reliable research works have recognized the complex role that software plays in national economic development strategies,pointing out that the domestic application and use of software products and services must be considered strategic imperatives in parallel with the development of a nation.
What makes software particularly interesting is the diverse characteristics of its global network requirement and effectiveness.This factor has continued to fuel the adventure of globalization and its inherent opportunities.
As the demand for application software increases around the world-accelerated by its diversity and potential capability to efficiently resolve complex development problems,technologically unconscious nations such as ours,will sooner or later,find herself caught up and entangled in the consumer addicted spider web-aided and abated by our current attitude embedded in Software Thinking Poverty
ISPON is concerned that,if our software thinking poverty is not engaged with conscious political will and strategies to reverse its current direction,the nation may become a classical example of the Digital colony of the 21st century
ISPON therefore desirous and hereby solicits your support to proffering solutions for sustainable policy,strategies and accelerated intervention into the following areas:
a.Software intervention and constructive engagement in education and health
b.Software intervention and constructive engagement in governance and public administration
c.Software intervention and constructive engagement in science and technology
d.Software intervention and constructive engagement in critical information infrastructure
e.Software intervention and constructive engagement in Agriculture and food security
f.Software intervention and constructive engagement in industry and commerce
g.Software intervention and constructive engagement in research and development
h.Software intervention and constructive engagement in public-private partnership
i.Software intervention and constructive engagement in global knowledge competitiveness
j.Software intervention and constructive engagement in rural community development
k.Software intervention and constructive engagement in arts and culture
The institute of software practitioners of Nigeria(ISPON)was established in 1999 to fulfill the following objectives amongst others:
To accelerate the creation of an enabling environment for sustainable growth of the Nigerian Software industry.To produce a large pool of software knowledge innovators and creative developers,capable of producing software that meet and surpass international standards,applying best practices and contributing to the advancement of global software engineering research.
ISPON’s software advocacy in the past,led to amongst other:the formulation and adoption of the National IT policy,the establishment of an inter ministerial committee on Software and the birth of the Nigeria Software Development Initiative(NSDI).We were part of the team who re-engineered Nigeria Software Exhibition(NISE).ISPON was instrumental to the establishment of ICT departments in federal ministries.For all the above achievements,i wish to recognise the untiring efforts of my Immediate past president-Engineer Simeon Chijioke Agu-Who initiated the popular ten point agenda for the Nigeria Software Industry-and laid a strong foundation for the take off of Software Nigeria.Thank you Sir.
My appreciation also goes to the NITDA board and in particular to Prof.Cleopas Angaye,DG NITDA for facilitating a major part of this conference and software competition.To all members of the National Executive Council of ISPON and to Dr.Chris Nwannenna-a founding member and trustee of ISPON,I salute your courage and team work attributes.
And finally,let me recognize and appreciate the tenacity and magnanimity of HE,Senator Liyel Imoke,the Governor of Cross river state and our formidable Chief host,for the confidence reposed in ISPON and his inspirational commitment to the actualization of this conference and Software Nigeria mission.
Your excellencies,distinguished ladies and gentlemen,welcome to the world of software.Welcome to the National Software Conference and Competition.Welcome to Tinapa, Calabar and enjoy your stay in Cross river state-acclaimed as perhaps,the most hospitable and secure state in Nigeria today.Welcome.