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How NIPOST DG, Bisi Adegbuyi allegedly  violates Executive Order 5 and lied about it on TV

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An ICT expert and former Squadron Leader in the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) Adefolajuwon Amoo (rtd) has raised the alarm over an alleged plan by the Federal Government, through the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST), to impose new tariffs worth N180 billion per annum on Nigerians.

This was even as he also alleged an intellectual property infringement and violation of President Muhammadu Buhari’s executive order number 5 by the Director-General of NIPOST, Mr. Bisi Adegbuyi.

He alleged that the NIPOST under the leadership of Adegbuyi stole his idea to the Federal Government into promoting a foreign technology called “What3words” owned by Mr Chris Sheldrik, a UK-based company, which is contrary to President Buhari’s Executive Order number 5 which gives priority to indigenous innovation so as to replace foreign technologies.

At a press conference which took place on 18th September 2018 in Abuja, Squadron Leader Adefola Amoo (rtd) said he felt it necessary to call to the attention of the nation that NIPOST Director General, Mr Bisi Adegbuyi, has violated Executive Order No 5 which was instituted by the President of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, to promote the product of indigenous innovators like himself.

Indeed, on page 5, item number 6, at the Preference Section of Executive Order No 5, it is actually stated that indigenous technology will be adopted to replace foreign ones.

The indigenous technology developed by Squadron Leader Adefola Amoo (rtd) is called GridCodes. Our checks show that the technology has been available for over a year on the Google Play store since 13 September 2017.

GridCodes allows you to generate codes similar to Post Codes and Zip Codes for your home/business addresses or any where you happen to be at any time.

All you need to do is to be at the location and one click will give you a code. You can add that code to your address or share it with people that need to meet you for business, deliveries or to socialise. The technology works in all countries in the world, it is instantly available and free to use. GridCodes has been accepted for Patent processing in Nigeria and at the US Patent Office.

The foreign technology from UK adopted by NIPOST is called “What3Words”.

A search on the company’s website and other media outlets showed that it’s co-founder Chris Sheldrick as well as Mr Bisi Adegbuyi have extensively broadcasted adoption of What3Words by NIPOST.

It seems the UK technology does exactly what GridCodes do using a different method. The UK Technology has mapped the surface of the earth and allocated 3 words to identify each 3m x 3m spot. Putting the associated 3 words into their system will get you to the location. The UK technology has also been accepted for patent processing in the UK. The technology is also free to use for individuals, like GridCodes is.

In this situation, it remains to be seen why Mr Adegbuyi of NIPOST has preferred to adopt a UK Technology when according to the Squadron Leader, he had been informed since 18 Jan of this year of his product. This would seem like an excellent opportunity to use a local tech to solve a local problem. It would have justified the existence of Executive Order No 5 and could have been an example of local innovation which could have been pushed globally. A much needed positive story to come out of Nigeria.

Strangely, though, on 10th September 2018, The DG NIPOST flatly denied the adoption of a foreign technology. The denial occurred at the 38th minute of an interview he granted to Bisi Folarin on the morning show of TVC. He categorically said “…there is nothing foreign about it”. How can this be so, when Mr Chris Sheldrick of What3Words granted an interview to Guardian Newspapers of Nigeria on 16th August, 2017. People deny and tell lies when they have been caught committing an offence. That seems to be what is happening here because there is overwhelming evidence in the public domain that NIPOST did adopt foreign technology.

The digital footprint of a nation’s population is the newest natural resource. Mr Bisi Adegbuyi has unwittingly rented out another sector of this natural resource to foreigners to exploit exclusively.

In doing so, he has foisted hardship on the population by demanding 1,000 naira from each of us annually for a service that is free from the UK and free from a Nigerian provider as well.

The UK company would have participated in allowing this potential N180bn fraud because they know that the value is not in the 1,000 naira that Mr Adegbuyi is aiming to collect. Rather the value is in broad adoption which will then setup future streams of revenue that will be accessed through technology as well.

Critical components of our Tech implementation is in foreign hands, our telecommunication, our internet, our satellite TV, our ride sharing, social media and now our addressing has been given to a foreign company when a local company exists already doing it in an innovative way that is recognised by international intellectual protection agencies.

Reacting, spokesman of NIPOST, Frank Alao, said the allegations were baseless. He described the NIPOST boss as a sincere person, who is neither a thief or a liar.

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PHOTO NEWS: NITDA DG, Abdullahi presents cheques, tablets to farmers trained on NITDA’s Smart Agric Platform

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NITDA DG, Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi presenting cheques and tablets to farmers who were trained on NITDA's Smart Agric Platform, formally launched at eNigeria Dinner and Awards night, recently
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Winners emerge in FCMB Flexxtern 4.0 contest

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Another set of thirty young Nigerian graduates are ready to gain first-hand work experience and employment opportunity in the corporate world under the fourth edition of the First City Monument Bank (FCMB) internship programme and contest, tagged #FCMBFlexxtern. The participants, who are between the ages of 16 and 25, emerged victorious in an online contest organised by the Bank as part of its youth engagement, capacity building and reward initiatives. This brings to fifty, the number of winners produced by the #FCMBFlexxtern initiative since it was launched in 2016.

The latest winners (Flexxterns) were inaugurated and presented with certificates at an event on October 31 in Lagos. Each of them will get a 3-month paid internship and career building experience with either FCMB or one of the organisations partnering with the bank on this capacity building initiative. The thirty beneficiaries also stand a chance of being retained for full employment at the end of their respective internships.

The inauguration provided an opportunity to meet the Flexxterns and introduce them to the organisations they would respectively work with. In attendance were representatives of the partner organisations such as Insight Publicis, Terragon Group, Digiengage and TISV Digital. Other partners were 618 Bees, Lumenave, Sagerock & Associates, Vas2Net, School Kits Limited, Dmastermind as well as Wetherheads.

The 2019 #FCMBFlexxtern contest, which began on September 13 and ended on October 5, was held at Flexxzone, the exclusive microsite built around FCMB’s Flexx proposition and which also provides relevant content to the Flexx target audience on a wide range of areas, including fashion, lifestyle, entrepreneurship. To qualify, interested youths were advised to upload a 45-second video to YouTube with the hashtag #FCMBFlexxtern, explaining why they were the best for the job and invite their friends to vote for them. At the end of the public voting stage, the 60 entries with the highest number of votes were shortlisted, after which a panel of judges carried out an independent rating of the contestants. This led to the emergence of winners.

Speaking at the event, FCMB’s Group Head, Corporate Affairs, Mr. Diran Olojo, expressed delight at the quality of entries received from contestants and the passion that Nigerian youths demonstrate when given the right opportunity to positively express themselves.

According to him, “it is very fulfilling to see a lot of young Nigerians embrace and heartily participate in the #FCMBFlexxtern initiative. This is important because it gives students and young graduates the opportunity to gain hands-on workplace and business experience. We realize that many youths have all it takes to succeed, but without the required mentoring, training and insights, it can be a challenge to achieve results. We are excited that the #FCMBFlexxtern initiative has become a catalyst to fast-track the development of a new generation of professionals’’.

Also commenting, the Group Head, Consumer Liability and Segment Management of FCMB, Mr. Shamsideen Fashola, said the Bank recognises the role of youths in building, shaping and driving economic growth.

He added that, ‘’at FCMB, we are passionate about creating opportunities not just for our customers, but all segments of the society. The #FCMBFlexxtern initiative is a value-added offering of our Flexx product for youths. Indeed, this programme is one of the ways we recognise and celebrate the youth as the central force for socio-economic development, and the hope for the future. As a business, we do not take this segment for granted. This informed the development of our Flexx product and proposition four years ago. Certainly, there is more to come from Flexx and FCMB’’.

The new Flexxterns commended FCMB for giving them the opportunity to showcase their skills and setting them on the right path towards the development of their careers through placement in top corporate organisations.

Derin Adeosun, a graduate of Economics from University of Lagos, said, “I am really excited to be part of this initiative. With the high rate of unemployment in Nigeria, it’s difficult for a young graduate like myself not to be anxious about obtaining gainful employment after leaving school. But FCMB has just given me the opportunity of a lifetime to start my career on very strong grounds and I couldn’t be more grateful. This is a Bank that truly understands the plight of the Nigerian youths’’.

Another Flexxtern and graduate of Accounting from Obafemi Awolowo University, Oyebowale Rebecca, stated that, “since my third year in school, I’ve always had my eyes set on participating in this remarkable initiative. This is because, I know without a single atom of doubt that kicking off my professional career with FCMB or any of the partner firms would definitely ensure that I am made fully equipped with the necessary skill sets and knowledge base required to make waves in the modern work place. And today, I can say with all the joy in my heart, that I am an FCMB Flexxtern, and for that, I want to say a big thank you to FCMB for providing me with a path that would lead me to achieving my life goals’’.

For more information about FCMB, please visit www.fcmb.com.

See pictures from the launch below:

 

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