sing E- Business Potentials to Reduce Internet Fraud

Digital Content

The need to expose Nigerians to legitimate job opportunities on Internet has been stressed by Nigeria Internet Group (NIG) at its maiden exhibition of business proposals on Internet for Jobs (I4J) Initiative in Lagos.

The foremost Internet body in the country last Friday commenced its search for Nigerians, mostly youths, who possessed e-business concepts. It expressed its readiness to extend N1 million grant to each of the shortlisted candidates.

The event was sponsored by Multi-Links. NIG said with the promotion of e-business and e-government, I4J aims at creating jobs for software programmers, webmasters, database managers, marketers and others in related fields and in addition to growing the business of Internet Service Providers, e-payment companies, cybercafés among others, who are employers of Information Technology (IT) personnel.

Scores of Nigerians responded to the open invitation from the NIG at Lagos Sheraton Hotel. With regards to the quality of presentations at the event, while many may have fallen short of the expectation of the panel of judges that comprised President of NIG, Lanre Ajayi, and his deputy, Kayode Shobayo, President of Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), Titi Omo-Ettu, the immediate President and Vice President of ATCON, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem and others, however, a point was made that there exists unlimited genuine businesses that can be done on internet.

Lanre Ajayi, the president of NIG lamented the rate at which some youths in the country are exhibiting their ICT potentials negatively on Internet to the disadvantage of the nation and themselves.

He said the focus of the event was to explore the potential of the Internet to create jobs for Nigerians and to transform the nation into a knowledge society. He noted that Nigerians are highly intelligent and can easily be trained to adopt new technologies and called for government and private sector support to discover hidden ICT potentials in Nigeria.

Explaining how the grant would be disbursed to the beneficiaries, he said, "Facilitation of e- business and e-government shall be done by giving grants to the beneficiaries of Internet for job initiatives. The grant is to enable the beneficiaries set up online services, which are in demand or may be in demand by their target communities/ market."

Ajayi, however, said that the grant shall not be given in cash to the beneficiaries but used to pay for services supported by I4J initiative. "These services include web portal development, training (information, technology and entrepreneurship) and marketing.

Not comfortable with the involvement of some youths in Internet fraud activities, Ekuwem believes that "it is unfortunate because there is a lot they can do effortlessly if they painstakingly annex their innovations."

He said time is ripe for Nigerians to grab opportunities available at their disposal via internet connection as the number of active internet users at interval increases in the country saying "the marginal returns on investment if people take into cognizant this advantage is enormous and we believe with what NIG is doing now, we getting there."

The former ATCON and NIG president argued that there is no need for anyone to be involved in Internet fraud. "Those who created Google and Yahoo are youths. Nigerians have what its takes to beat their counterparts to innovation anywhere in the world."

Having assessed the quality of presentations at the event, Banjo advised youths to sharpen their ICT skills to meet the innovative standard that can lure investors to support them. The Chief Executive of Disk Engineering Communications, who doubles at the chairman of e-Business arm of NIG noted that Nigerians have the potentials to rule the world in ICT and hereby tasked the youth on thoroughness.

"This event is not about coming here to listen to tales from people, who believe we out to provide them with net to catch fish at the lagoon. We are concerned about the need to encourage those who have ideals and are propelled to do legitimate business on net. For those who want to play the oratory ostrich, they may as well look elsewhere. Certainly this is a worthy cause and we are for it" Banjo said.