LISTSERV mailing list manager LISTSERV 16.5

Help for AFRIK-IT Archives


AFRIK-IT Archives

AFRIK-IT Archives


AFRIK-IT@LISTSERV.HEANET.IE


View:

Message:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Topic:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Author:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

Font:

Proportional Font

LISTSERV Archives

LISTSERV Archives

AFRIK-IT Home

AFRIK-IT Home

AFRIK-IT  November 1999

AFRIK-IT November 1999

Subject:

Re: Nigeria to Start Y2K Checks Next Month

From:

Cliff Missen <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

African Network of IT Experts and Professionals (ANITEP) List

Date:

Mon, 29 Nov 1999 10:50:47 -0600

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (91 lines)

An interesting thread, gentlemen.  I'd like to add a few comments:

As one who has worked with the dissemination of information technology in
Nigeria (albeit not "quietly") I can easily say that Nigeria has a serious
lack of people with strong technical skills in contemporary PC networking
and the Internet.  That's not to say that there are no Nigerians with such
skills, there are highly competent people like Sunday peppered throughout
the country, but not enough experts for a country of 110 million.

What I believe Eberhard was laughing at was the denial of the magnitude of
the Y2K situation as expressed by the minister.  It may well be that
Nigeria is largely Y2K compliant, but why, given the demonstrated
incompetencies of the various government agencies in this area, should we
believe them when they pronounce it?  If Nigeria is Y2K compliant, it is
because few critical systems depend upon computers and most of the
computers that are still working in the country are less than five years
old.  (As one of my cohorts at the University of Jos was fond of saying,
"Everyday is Y2K in Nigeria!")

Eberhard has a less-than-diplomatic way of describing his perception of the
true state of affairs, but, finesse aside, I have to agree with him.  As I
have been taught by many of my mentors: "Accurately defining the problem is
half of the solution."

Sure Nigeria is a "giant" and sure no one likes to be laughed at.  But
ridiculous statements need to challenged by thoughtful people and not
whitewashed in the name of nationalism.  Nigeria has suffered mightily for
trying to maintain the veneer of a dynamic, modern, and democratic country
under decades of debilitating and repressive military regimes.   Progress
will only come through taking a sober look at what needs to be accomplished
and using whatever tools are available to attack the problems.

As I toured various universities around Nigeria I inevitably ran into the
same thing: administrators all-to-willing to overstate and exaggerate their
systems so as to impress the foreigner.  (I also run into this in my
private sector and university consulting here in the 'States, so I suspect
it's a universal compulsion…)  It wasn't until we dug into the details and
exposed the true state of affairs that I could be of any assistance and my
hosts could see rational solutions.

Last year I attended Afrinet '99 in Abuja.  There were representatives from
numerous African countries, many of which demonstrate significant progress
towards using digital communications.  It was interesting to hear many of
these representatives pleading with and chiding Nigeria.  "You have the
money.  You have the resources.  You have the manpower," they were saying.
"You should be leading us.  Not us leading you!"

I agree.

Nigeria needs to build a society that will welcome and accommodate her
brilliant, far-flung sons and daughters.  Nigeria needs to make digital
communication a priority and broaden access for greater participation.
(Not stuff data communications under the sluggish NITEL and charge her own
universities millions for a satellite license.  Ki!)  And Nigeria needs to
focus on training a LARGE cadre of information technology professionals to
tame the technology and make it serve Nigerians… and eventually the entire
continent.

-- Cliff





At 05:36 AM 11/29/99 GMT, Kelechi Eke wrote:
>>Well, the Truth is the fact that Nigeria and Africa as a whole is
>>behind in Technology from whatever angle one looks at it and no
>>aspect of it is asing.
>
>I personally know some fellow Africans that are on top of Technology.





-----

Cliff Missen

University of Iowa, Iowa City, USA
[log in to unmask]

Internetworks in International Development
     http://intlinet.lib.uiowa.edu

The University of Jos (Nigeria) Project
     http://intlinet.lib.uiowa.edu/josproject

Cliff Missen's Home Page
     http://www.avalon.net/~cmissen

Top of Message | Previous Page | Permalink

Advanced Options


Options

Log In

Log In

Get Password

Get Password


Search Archives

Search Archives


Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Subscribe or Unsubscribe


Archives

January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
September 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
October 2009
September 2009
July 2009
June 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
November 2008
October 2008
August 2008
July 2008
April 2008
March 2008
November 2007
August 2007
July 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
November 2005
October 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003
May 2003
April 2003
March 2003
February 2003
January 2003
December 2002
November 2002
October 2002
September 2002
August 2002
July 2002
June 2002
May 2002
April 2002
March 2002
February 2002
January 2002
December 2001
November 2001
October 2001
September 2001
August 2001
July 2001
June 2001
May 2001
April 2001
March 2001
February 2001
January 2001
December 2000
November 2000
October 2000
September 2000
August 2000
July 2000
June 2000
May 2000
April 2000
March 2000
February 2000
January 2000
December 1999
November 1999
October 1999
September 1999
August 1999
July 1999
June 1999
May 1999
April 1999
March 1999
February 1999
January 1999
December 1998
November 1998
October 1998
September 1998
August 1998
July 1998
June 1998
May 1998
April 1998
March 1998
February 1998
January 1998
December 1997
November 1997
October 1997
September 1997
August 1997
July 1997
June 1997
May 1997
April 1997
March 1997
February 1997
January 1997
December 1996
November 1996
October 1996
September 1996
August 1996
July 1996
June 1996
May 1996
April 1996
March 1996
February 1996
January 1996
December 1995
November 1995
October 1995
September 1995
August 1995
July 1995
June 1995
May 1995

ATOM RSS1 RSS2



LISTSERV.HEANET.IE

Secured by F-Secure Anti-Virus CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager