Google has introduced its new Director for West Africa, Mr. Olumide Balogun, to the Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency, Kashifu Inuwa CCIE.
This move follows Google’s assurance of maintaining a strong partnership between the two organizations.
Mr. Balogun, who previously managed Google as Head of Consumer Apps for Sub-Saharan Africa, emphasized the importance of this familiarization visit to NITDA.
He expressed Google West Africa’s commitment to enhancing the partnership.
Balogun’s journey to his current position involved significant roles in tech and marketing.
He was previously the Head of Marketing at HMD Global-West Africa and also served as Microsoft Corporation’s Head of Marketing for West Africa.
His career began in 2006 at IL-Systems Limited as a Software Development Engineer.
He later joined Nokia and then Microsoft, showcasing his dedication and expertise.
In a meeting in Abuja, Balogun highlighted Google’s engagement in African internet development for over eight years.
He mentioned Google’s transition to an AI-first company in 2015 and its current focus on Artificial Intelligence in Africa, with a report set to be unveiled in South Africa.
NITDA’s Director General, Kashifu Inuwa, believes that a Google-NITDA partnership could generate a million digital jobs in Nigeria.
He emphasized the role of the government in creating an environment conducive to digital transformation and job creation.
Inuwa acknowledged the successful collaboration between NITDA and Google Developers Group, leading to the training of 150,000 Nigerian youths.
He also discussed initiatives like the National Center for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics and plans for technology development zones in cooperation with universities.
He expressed the need for stakeholders to collaborate with NITDA in establishing seed investment funds for startups, emphasizing the potential for increased investment in Africa’s tech ecosystem.
Inuwa’s vision aligns with Nigeria’s youthful population’s potential to play a significant role in narrowing the digital transformation gap.